MILLET CELEBRATES VOLUNTEERS & LOCAL COMPETITION

 The Town of Millet is a community that works and pulls together, everyone contributing and taking great and well-deserved pride in their award-winning results that have earned them the title 'The Prettiest Little Town in Alberta'.
 The mood was celebratory, warm and high-spirited at Millet's 16th Annual Volunteer Appreciation Dinner & Local Competition Awards night held on July Thursday, July 28 at the Millet Agriplex.  The banquet room filled with residents, volunteers, Mayor Lorenson and Town Council members and CIB dignitaries.
 Councillor Eleanor Pydde welcomed everyone, introduced National Judges Maurice Baren from West Yorkshire, England and Bob Lewis from Ottawa, Ontario and explained the background on CIB. 
 "Communities in Bloom is a Canadian non-profit organization committed to fostering civic pride, environmental responsibility, beautification and to improving quality of life through community participation and the challenge of a national and international competition," said Eleanor.  This year the Town of Millet is participating in the CIB National Circle of Champions - Evaluation Category.  Circle of Champions are past winners of the national or international competition who are not competing with other winners but are evaluated to confirm their bloom rating and are expected to maintain their bloom ratings.
 Councillor Pydde explained that Judges Maurice Baren and Bob Lewis would be judging Millet on its overall performance in the following areas:

• Tidiness - elements for evaluation are green spaces, medians, boulevards, sidewalks, streets, municipal, commercial, institutional and residential properties, ditches, road shoulders with regard to weeds, maintenance and repair, graffiti and vandalism.
• Environmental Action - Includes efforts and achievements with respect to policies, bylaws and best practices, waste reduction, landfill sites, environmental stewardship activities
• Heritage Conservation - Category includes efforts made by the town to preserve heritage within the community.  Priority in evaluation is given to natural heritage as well as integration of landscape and streetscapes as it pertains to the built heritage of a community.
• Urban Forestry - Efforts by the municipality, businesses, institutions and residents are evaluated with regard to written policies, bylaws, standards for tree management and tree replacement policy.
• Landscape - Supports all efforts to create an environment showcasing the overall surroundings such as parks and grounds, green spaces, turf and ground covers.
• Floral Displays - Evaluation  includes the design and arrangements of flowers and plants in the context of originality, distribution, location, diversity and balance, color and harmony.
• Community Involvement - This category includes public involvement in various community programs and projects, recognition of volunteers, and support toward community initiatives.
 
 The results and winners will be announced at the Annual Communities in Bloom Symposium on Parks and Grounds and Awards ceremony held this year in Quebec City on October 29, explained Councillor Pydde.
 Everyone then joined in the singing of the National Anthem, followed by Invocation, after which everyone sat down to a wonderful supper, many thanks to Millet Skillet.
 Following the meal, Mayor Lorenson thanked everyone for attending and showing their support, and a special thank you to all the volunteers who work hard to improve the quality of life for everyone.  The Mayor then introduced Town of Millet staff.
 Councillor Pydde then introduced Chair of the Millet in Bloom, Carol Sadoroszney, who spoke of being "overwhelmed with all the volunteer help."  The recent hailstorm that pounded the Town of Millet left much of the CIB work in tatters.  However, the town came together and worked diligently to repair the damage.
 Awards were presented with special thanks for the extra effort put forth by everyone after the storm.
 Following a short break, Tracey Leavitt from the Millet & District Museum presented a power point presentation of the Town and it's beautification created by CIB volunteers and citizens.
 The Town of Millet is proud to have been Provincial CIB Winners in 1997 and 2006, and National Winners in 2001 and 2007.

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