History - Foothills City Kinsmen

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Foothills City

(Excerpt from Galaxy of Gold (1979))

(This club is no longer operational)

On January 12, 1974, Calgary’s third Kinsmen club, the Kinsmen Club of Foothills City, was chartered at the Kinsmen Centre in Stampede Park. Organizational meetings, under charter chairman Erin Kitzul, together with Bill Strand of the Stampede City club, and John Glans and Dave Sharpe from the Calgary club, were held beginning in May of 1973.

Over the following months more potential members were recruited until, by charter night, fifty members were signed up under the presidency of Jim Milum. In attendance at the charter festivities were almost 300 visiting Kin, National President George Irving, Governor Glen Chapman and Deputy Governor Reg Baldwin.

The first year activities included many small money raising projects, attendance at the District Convention, and a substantial intake of cash from the hundreds of Sergeant-at-Arms fines levied each meeting.

The second year was an extremely successful one for the club. Foothills City Kinsmen teamed up with Stampede City and Calgary Kinsmen to host Calgary’s first Telethon. Almost $648,000, collected in the 24-hour Telethon, was turned over to the Children’s Pediatric Research Centre at the Children’s Hospital. Later a casino night raised $3,400 in funds. Other fund raisers included a Car Award with the Calgary club, and Skate-a-thon held in conjunction with the Stampede City club.

The Outstanding Kinsmen award was introduced that year. Stampede City hosted the Spring Zone meeting and Glen Dmetrichuck won the Manley Edwards Senior Bulletin Award for his outstanding club bulletins. There was a lot of interclub travelling that year as well as visitations on the local level. The Traveling Can (a can built outhouse) was instituted for social visitations. Later the outhouse was changed to a fur lined toilet seat. A steak and beans night and a skating party also helped members of the club get better acquainted.

The three Calgary clubs hosted their second Telethon in the ’75-’76 year, the proceeds of which went to equip the children’s hospital. The club also gave an $8,000 bus to the Handicapped Association, $1,000 to the Cystic Fibrosis research fund, and $1,000 to the Hal Rogers Building Fund.

It was during this year that Stampede City Kin got involved in building a canoe used for World Council Conference promotional purposes. The canoe started its trip from Grande Prairie to Newfoundland intact, but only the sail made it to the eastern island. Rumour has it a storm came along and washed the boat off someone’s car.

Foothills City Kin ran and saw elected Bill Holowatiuk as Deputy Governor for the 1976-’77 term. For his efforts in this capacity he was presented with the Outstanding Deputy Governor’s Award.

The following year the casino became a two-day affair. A third Kinsmen Telethon was held, with the proceeds going to geriatric research. Stampede City Kin assisted the Calgary club in hosting the World Council Conference, where the club distinguished itself by winning the world championships in the men’s and women’s beer drinking contests.

Two other rather exciting events happened that year. In September Foothills City Kin were presented with a buffalo belonging to the Rosetown Saskatchewan Kinsmen, with the suggestion that the beast be passed along or sent home C.O.D.

The second event to remember was the Fall Zone golf tournament in Banff. Here two illustrious Past-Presidents of the Foothills City club were leaders of the Rat Patrol. Instead of using guns, their weapons were axes, which they used to chop nice little round golf balls into halves or quarters.

In the 1977-’78 year Foothills Kinsmen continued fund raisers with the other two city clubs. They donated a 44-pasenger modified school bus to the City of Calgary for use of senior citizens.

Foothills Kinsmen became involved working with post operative patients at the Foothills Hospital. Entertainment was also provided three nights a week for some of the not-so-mobile patients. A great deal of money was raised for the Cystic Fibrosis research fund that year through the sale of giant sized colouring books.

Zone and District participation was at and all-time high. Foothills City Kin hosted and won the Zone Five golf tournament and won the Zone hockey tournament. They tied at Zone level for first place in curling, but lost to Calgary on the basis of points.

On June 9, 1979, Canada’s fiftieth Participark, built by the Foothills City Kinsmen Club, was opened. Gerry Allen, National Co-ordinator, Marv Woelfle, District Governor, and Bing Rundquist, Deputy Governor, were in attendance. The park was officially turned over to the City of Calgary, ably represented by Deputy Mayor Greg Husband who ‘participated’ through the park with the Kinsmen.

In the spring of 1979 Wayne Webb received the Outstanding President’s Award and Jim Rackham was elected the Deputy Governor for the 1979-’80 term.

The Foothills City Club has a number of social functions throughout the year. Induction night is a mixed semi-formal affair. During the winter a children’s Christmas party is held as well a Snow Bash, which is a family weekend spent at Kinsmen Camp Horizon. Anniversary nights, picnics, and wind-up parties are other events. The wind-up party usually takes the form of wing-ding out at a ranch with entertainment provided by a disc jockey or a band, egg throwing contests, calf catching contests and hay rides.

The Foothills Kinsmen Kinette Club was chartered January 11, 1975 under President Arlene Dmetrichuk. The first year activities concentrated on getting to know other Kinettes and studying the organization. One of the highlights of the second year was when the Kinettes held a spring dance for Kinsmen and friends, which was a huge success!

Some of the fund raisers employed by the club have included casinos, garage sales, bottle drives, bake sales and raffles, sales of dolls and books, and help at the Kinsmen Car Awards.

One of the largest service projects has been the assistance to the Home for Unwed Mothers. It took the Kinettes one full year to research the project. The girls had been looking for a project that required not only money, but something of themselves as well. Barbecues have been held for the young mothers each June, and throughout the year there have been activities such as bowling, make-up demonstrations, Christmas parties, craft nights, bingos and movies.

The Kinettes help the Kinsmen telephoning, providing entertainment at some Kinsmen meetings, organizing the Kiddies Christmas parties, serving lunch at the Kinsmen Casinos and assisting with the Cystic Fibrosis colouring book project.

Kinette socials include spring dances, Christmas parties and Mother and Daughter banquets.

The Foothills City Kinettes helped to charter the Strathmore Kinette Club. They were awarded the Attendance Trophy at the District Convention during the 1977-’78 term.

Foothills City, as one of the three Kinsmen Clubs in Calgary, has found its niche. Through co-operation, both on the social and fund raising levels, the club is able to make a significant contribution to the community. It has at the same time developed a charter all its own, and has maintained its independence and identity. The future looks bright indeed for this Calgary service club addition.