This message is to unveil a new GESA initiative.
As you know we are asking $25.00 per person to compete in our tournaments. The distribution of this money is as follows: $5.00 towards equipment purchases, $10.00 towards our rent and the last $10.00 to cash prizes.
Shufflers have made it clear to me that they do not want trophies, maybe small pins, but cash is definitely the winner.
Initially we budgeted for 184 players in each of our tournaments which would have yielded $1,840. in prize money. I fear that for the 2017 year we will not meet the 184 player quota. Instead I will be very happy to match Innisfail's 128 players number and that would bring in $1,280. in prize money. AN idea came to me, of maybe augmenting the cash payouts by $560. to stay at $1,840 of prize money. It could be possible to accomplish this with a bottle drive.
As nutty as it sounds I ran it by Bev and Wynn Textor and Ken Ogston when we delivered the lumber and they thought it was a great idea. Bev instantly gave me 2 bags of bottles and when I added mine to this, our little fund already has $17.25 in it. I also ran it by some other members last week and I think it was well received. Linda (Sassy) tells me another member was talking to her about it on Friday and will be bringing in his bottles. I'm looking forward to seeing more bottles soon.
We are presently at 55 members so if we all pull together I think we can easily do this.
Here's how it will work. You can bring your bottle donations to the Ottewell when you come to shuffle and we'll take them to the bottle depot or our preference would be for you to take them to the bottle depot and turn the cash in to our volunteer at the registration table when you come to play shuffleboard.
If bottles aren't your thing we will take your cash if you say it is specifically for the cash prizes at the tournament.
We cannot use money already donated by individuals and companies for this as it is not what it was intended to go towards. We have barely been open for 2 weeks and we have signed up 55 paid members and last time I checked (a week ago) with the Jones' they had 55 players for the singles and 14 couples for the mixed doubles.
We need for you to keep reaching out to people to join and to compete in our tournaments. If they do not know how to shuffle we will teach them.
PEASE let's keep this momentum going!
June 26, 2020
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Service Canada/Government of Canada
In March of 2019 the Greater Edmonton Shuffleboard Association (GESA) Board members started looking into a grant program to help purchase the equipment needed to expand our club. We are a not for profit club operated by volunteers. We have grown steadily in the last 3 years. We found a community-based project grant program funded by the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program. We applied for the maximum allowable amount.
Seniors have planned and executed everything we have done so far and through hard work and not much money we have still managed to let the public know about us. We have held tournaments whereby people from all over Western Canada and even some US citizens have come to compete. Our project was to purchase the equipment needed to double our capacity and to make 1/2 of our playing court area safer (i.e. carpeting). We have had on occasion to turn people away in our third year as we can only play 48 people at a time. Expansion will allow up to 96 to play. With guidance from staff at NHSP we completed the necessary documents and in June 2019 submitted our application for this grant. The amount we applied for was $24,409.
In February 2020 GESA received word that our project had been approved! A bit more paperwork to do and we could now purchase 12 more courts, 24 sets of the new factory beveled discs, carpeting for the shooter’s boxes and runners for in-between the courts for enhanced footing on at least 1/2 of our courts. This carpeting would greatly increase the safety for courts 1 through 12. Carpeting is used at 2 other older established clubs in Alberta so we know from their experience what the carpet delivers with respect to safety. We also budgeted $750. for a computer to assist with on-line court registration and manage our charting for tournaments as well as other club needs. It was while I was in Arizona this winter, I received word that our application had been accepted and the agreement to accept and to fund our project would follow. This happened in March of 2020. Covid had just begun and little did we know the world would be turned upside down.
We were able to sign the paperwork in Mesa, Az, as 4 of our GESA Board members were in Mesa Arizona at the time. Three of the signing authorities met on a street, we social distanced, wore masks and gloves and signed the agreement papers, and disinfected all we touched.
It is now June 2020 and Covid-19 rules have been relaxed enough that we can start reduced shuffleboard play and use this new equipment following covid-19 restrictions for players. The timing could be very beneficial to benefit our shuffleboard competitors in the Greater Edmonton area as the feedback I am getting is that a lot of senior activities have not opened up and there is therefore not a lot to do. Our program may be the answer to get our shuffling friends some exercise and social contact (while safely distancing) with others who are like-minded and of similar physical abilities.
Our project goal is to make sure nobody gets shut out because there is no more room. The expansion allows us to go to 96 people from 48 (will be cut in 1/2 by covid-19 social distancing until we are told differently). A computer would allow members to email a pre-registration so they are not shut out at the door. Some members have hour long drives to get to the club.
We have had a positive effect on the community as our senior skills have taught us to run an efficient and inexpensive club that all levels of seniors can enjoy. Our club plays indoors making it pleasant for all seniors anytime they come out to play.
Our shuffleboard club is very grateful for all the support and guidance we received when applying for this grant and we consider our club very fortunate to have received this grant that we know will make a difference in many lives. A special thank you to our contacts, Papinder Rehncy, Grace McRae, and Chad Arnish, A/Team Leader, New Horizons for Seniors Program, for your patience in answering all our emails, calls, questions and advice. Our success is the team effort given by all.
Charles Loiselle, President
Greater Edmonton Shuffleboard Association