The RMWB is putting its best foot forward, while Communities In Bloom judges are in town evaluating our community.
The municipality is competing in the CIB’s International Challenge category against Bruges Belgium, Coquitlam BC, and Holland Michigan.
CIB encourages communities to enhance the visual appeal of neighbourhoods, public spaces, and parks through the use of flowers, plants, trees, and landscaping.
Judge Bob Lewis tells Mix News they’ve got the sense that Fort McMurray is all about community and people.
“That’s truly reflected in everything we’ve seen.”
Fort McMurray was slated to compete in last year’s competition but due to the wildfire and evacuation, they had to skip the challenge.
Judge Bob Ivison was scheduled to come to Fort McMurray last year. He says he remembers seeing everything the community was going through on TV.
“It wouldn’t have been fair to the community for us to come up and judge them but when I got the word we were coming back this year – I was very pleased because I wanted to see how things have changed and what the impact had truly been.”
Both judges noted the speed of the rebuild was simply amazing, surprised they got the chance to come here for the competition so quickly after the past events.
“They should be congratulated for being in the program this year,” added Lewis.
So far, the two have visited Vista Ridge, MacDonald Island Park, the airport, Snye Park, Jubilee Plaza, McMurray Experience, Ross Hennigar Park, Helen Pacholko Park, Birchwood Trails, among others.
Over the next day, they will be visiting Waterways, Anzac, the Wood Buffalo Food Bank, Dunvegan Gardens, the Heritage Shipyard, and much more.
As for Fort McMurray’s chances, Lewis says we have a decent 25 per cent chance of winning.
“A one in four chance, a solid one in four chance.”
The winner will be announced in September at the 2017 Symposium and Awards Ceremonies.