Sarah Foottit, Beth Mattioli and Jadacia Barker will represent Quesnel at a variety of events for the next year after being crowned the 2020 Quesnel Ambassadors on July 4. (Rose Scott - submitted photo)

Sarah Foottit, Beth Mattioli and Jadacia Barker will represent Quesnel at a variety of events for the next year after being crowned the 2020 Quesnel Ambassadors on July 4. (Rose Scott - submitted photo)

Year in Review: July

The Observer looks back at July 2020

• Kate Cox took over as CEO of Barkerville Historic Town and Park and Cottonwood Historic Site following the retirement of Ed Coleman.

“I’m delighted to be here,” said Cox. “Originally my family is from Nanaimo and Kamloops and kind of scattered all over B.C., really we’ve been here since the late 1800’s and Barkerville is part of my own family heritage and memories so it’s an incredible experience to be able to take on this role and exciting new adventure.”

Before returning to B.C. Cox had been working as an independent consultant in the United States, focusing primarily on rural economic development over for the past five years, most recently working to help communities in coastal Oregon to transition from natural resource to tourism based economies.

Coleman had been the CEO since 2014.

• The newly-established North Cariboo Seniors’ Council (NCSC) received $10,000 in funding from the United Way Northern B.C. Community Emergency Support Fund to prepare and deliver meals to vulnerable seniors whose excursions have been severely limited by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the second grant the NCSC has received from United Way for meal delivery. The first grant for $6,000 came through the COVID-19 Relief Fund, with meal delivery commencing in mid-June and set to continue until to mid-August.

• The Quesnel Art Gallery re-opened to the public in early July with the opening of a new show called Artists in Isolation. The show featured works by nine local artists, most of which was created during the COVID-19 pandemic. Along with the art, written statements from each artist as to how the pandemic has affected their work and artistic process were also displayed in the gallery.

• In anticipation of the long-awaited rebuild of West Fraser Road, ?Esdilagh First Nation developed an interim archaeological policy they say provides them with more protections and say over their lands.

The policy requires each project within the ?Esdilagh caretaker area to be assessed by the Nation and have at least one representative on-site. It also directs that work be stopped and the Nation notified if there are any unexpected archaeological finds.

• The bid process for C&C Wood Products closed July 7.

C&C Wood Products shut down its operation on May 29, 2020 and the company filed for bankruptcy on June 2, 2020, resulting in the loss of between 100 and 130 full-time jobs in Quesnel.

Later in the month, PricewaterhouseCooper, the receiver in the C&C Wood Products and Westside Logging Ltd. bankruptcy, entered into two purchase agreements with Quesnel Investment Corporation. The sale offer went to the B.C. Supreme Court for approval July 29.

READ MORE: Court approves sale of C&C Wood Products and Westside Logging in Quesnel

• Quesnel RCMP was investigating after a northbound semitruck clipped the rails of the Quesnel River Bridge, causing extensive damage of more than $120,000 and damaging a city water line. The driver fled the scene of the incident, which initially forced the bridge’s closure in both directions for about an hour. Subsequent repair work caused further delays on the bridge.

• Sarah Foottit, Beth Mattioli and Jadacia Barker were crowned the 2020 Quesnel Ambassadors at the conclusion of the Quesnel Ambassadors Leadership Program Pageant Night, which was a mostly-virtual event due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Nicole Proudfoot won the Bob Graham Award for showing a positive attitude, working hard toward personal growth and being excited to volunteer, as well as the Speech Award. Melinda Jaggernath won the award for Most Improved Speech. Tayla Sherstan won the Friendship Award, which is voted on by all the candidates while Mattioli won the Knowledge Award and Foottit won the Talent Award.

• After 31 years of providing fresh produce to Quesnel Farmers Market customers, Cathy Allen and Rob Borsato of Mackin Creek Farm announced they are retiring.

“It’s the right time for us,” Borsato said. “Seeing the young farmers coming to the market, we’re confident they will keep the market one of the best in the province.”

Their last market was July 25.

• The Quesnel Rodeo Club and South Quesnel Business Association partnered with Fresh Air Cinemas to provide a fun drive-in movie experience for the community and raise money for Special Olympics.

In all, roughly 90 vehicles attended the screenings of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Onward, raising $1,800 for the Quesnel Special Olympics chapter.

• Quesnel’s larger-than-life gold pan moved to its new home across the highway from the Visitor Information Centre.

Mayor Bob Simpson said council’s decision to move the gold pan was part of a bigger plan when rebranding the city, noting the gold pan can be used as a photo op for travellers disembarking off the Rocky Mountaineer or stopping in to check out the visitor info centre. Many community members felt the gold pan should have stayed in its original location north of the city, where Highway 97 meets Highway 26 and the road the Barkerville.

• On Wednesday, July 29, B.C. Supreme Court approved the deal PricewaterhouseCooper made earlier this month with a company named Quesnel Investment Corporation.

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