It was a day of celebration at the Valley View Manor as residents and visitors alike attended the official grand opening and ribbon cutting of the senior’s home.
Close to 150 people gathered in the dining room of the manor to listen to the speeches and, later, many went outside to witness the official ribbon cutting.
Ponoka County Reeve and Rimoka Housing board chairman Paul McLauchlin was the master of ceremonies for the event.
Although McLauchlin’s comments were sprinkled with humor, his message was heartfelt and sincere.
“Who knew that a cow pasture could be turned into someone’s home?” he questioned.
He noted there had been many signposts during the process of making Valley View Manor a reality and the ribbon cutting signified the end of a long journey.
“I am pleased that finally we have the finale (grand opening).”
McLauchlin noted that it has been a long journey and that a great many people have been involved in helping to make Valley View Manor a reality. He thanked the municipal, provincial and federal governments for their continued support. He also singled out Mayor Rick Pankiw for his tenaciousness and determination that the rooms would be larger than originally planned.
“The building committee and Rick Pankiw are the reason those rooms are bigger,” he said.
Mayor Pankiw thanked former councillors and the present council as well as the residents and the community for their hard work and support. He singled out former councilor Matthew Jaycox as a “real rock” during his time on the Rimoka Building Committee.
He also thanked Ponoka County for donating the land for the senior’s home and Rimoka CAO Peter Hall for his hard work and determination during the process.
Hall showed a short video of the day residents moved from Parkland Manor to Valley View Manor. He noted the move wouldn’t have been possible without the help of the community including Rimoka staff, FCSS, the volunteer fire department, the Lions Club and staff from ATB and many individual volunteers who gave willingly of their time and effort.
“Everyone we asked to help said yes. It was a lot of work and a lot of community coming together.”
Rimbey-Rocky-Mountain House-Sundre MLA Jason Nixon said Valley View Manor is “fabulous.”
“It’s a real positive step in keeping our seniors in their own community.”