By June Norvila
The 2009 version of the Alberta 55 Plus Summer Games just concluded. It had been hosted by the city of Airdrie from July 23 – 26.
Over 1,000 participants from across Alberta competed in 15 different activities and two cultural components over the course of the three days of competition and cultural celebrations.
Bryan Wiese, who has been training on his own in the area on pavement for speed and on graveled roads to increase his endurance, competed in cycling. He placed third in the Men’s 10 km 60+ with a time of 14 minutes 43.4 seconds, less than a minute back of second place and just a minute and half from gaining gold.
Wiese also finished third in the Men’s 20 km 60+ with a time of 31:50.0 – a mere minute and a half behind the second place finisher and less than three and a half minutes from gold.
The 2011 Alberta 55 Plus Summer Games will be hosted in Fairview and Wiese already has his eyes set on and is training for that competition. He says, “The competition will be even tougher there. I know who some of the competitors will be in my category there, and they are real competitive.”
In horseshoes Allan Boettger came away with a gold medal in the 55+ Men’s Singles “A” category.
Bentley Horseshoe Club member Hazel Heistad earned gold in the 55+ Women’s Singles “C” and Pearl Boettger placed fifth in the 65+ Open Singles “D” class.
Events included track and field, bocce, contract bridge, cribbage, cycling, darts, disk golf, floor curling, golf, horseshoes, military whist, pool (8 ball), slo-pitch, swimming, tennis, visual arts and crafts, and visual creative writing.
It took two years of preparation and planning for the more than 800 volunteers to make sure participants and their spouses were well fed and cared for and transported to and from their venues, and other places they wanted to go.