Category: Events

Andrea Lee leads through three rounds at Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship

RED DEER – Andrea Lee (Hermosa Beach, Calif.) shot 3-under-par 69 at Red Deer Golf & Country Club on Thursday and heads into the final round of the 106th Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship with a three-stroke lead.

Lee held a share of the lead after the opening round, but fell to second after 36 holes. The No. 2-ranked golfer on the World Amateur Golf Ranking sunk four birdies in the third round, moving herself to 10 under for the tournament.

“I played really solid today and had a good front nine,” said Lee. “On the back, I just stayed really patient. I made nine straight pars and played steady golf. It’s a really tough field and a lot of top amateurs are out here competing, so it’s always fun and exciting to be out here.”

After roaring into the lead with a first round of 6 under 66, Lee was quiet in round two, shooting 1 under. The USGA has committed to send at least two players to both the Canadian Men’s and Women’s Amateur Championship since 2017, and Lee’s play at the 2019 edition of the competition is a direct result of that commitment.

Round two leader Jennifer Chang (Cary, N.C.) shot even-par, leaving her at 7 under for the tournament.

Brianna Navarrosa (San Diego, Calif.) remained in third place, four back of Lee, with a round of 2 under.

The low round of the day belonged to Therese Warner of Kennwick, Wash. Warner shot 4 under 68, moving into fourth position at 5 under for the tournament.

The low Canadian heading into the final round is 12-year-old Michelle Liu of Vancouver. Liu was bogey-free in round two, but carded 1 over on Thursday, sitting in a tie for sixth.

The final round of competition will see the first groups tee off at 7:30 a.m. from holes No. 1 and No. 10.

Full scoring can be found here.

(Golf Canada)

Canadian Women’s Amateur underway at Red Deer Golf & Country Club

Canadian Women’s Amateur underway at Red Deer Golf & Country Club

Becky Martin believes her best is yet to come at the Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship after carding an opening round 74 (+2) at the Red Deer Golf & Country Club.

“There are good scores out there for sure,” said the Medicine Hat native, who sat eight strokes back of Californians Zoe Campos and Andrea Lee, who led at the time of publication. “I think I just need to wait for my moment where I’m hitting the ball good enough that I feel confident that I can go for things.”


After putting together an opening-nine 34, sitting one shot off the pace and tied for third at the time, Martin struggled on the back-nine. She came in with a birdie-less 40, finishing with a bogey on the par-4 18th.

Despite a less-than-ideal back-nine, Martin says she’s proud of how she’s positioned herself among some of the best amateur golfers in the world.

“I’ve been putting extremely well (lately) and I did today, which saved me a bunch of strokes,” she continued. “I was not very confident iron-wise, but it’s the first day. You kind of get some of the jitters out and see how it goes.”

Canadian Women’s Amateur underway at Red Deer Golf & Country Club 1Becky Martin

Martin is also wearing the provincial colours after claiming the Alberta Women’s Amateur Championship two weeks ago at The Ranch Golf Club in Acheson. On top of the individual competition, she’s in charge of Alberta’s Inter-Provincial team alongside Calgarians MacKenzie Baustad and Stephanie Chelack.

The three ladies sit third following the first round, four shots back of Quebec in the lead at +4. The second round will serve as the final round for inter-provincial team play, with the third and fourth round reserved for individuals who survive the cut.

Martin says there’s a little more pressure as Alberta’s top player at the event, considering the team format involves taking the best two-out-of-three scores on each hole.

“The first player should count the majority of the time just like in college golf,” she added. “I think it starts with me. If I can pull down the number, someone else can pull down as well, and you’ll never know where you’ll end up.”

While there is obvious pressure in competing in such a prestigious event, Martin says she’s doing her best to soak up the experience and enjoy herself on one of Alberta’s nicest courses.

“It’s not just a game, but it’s a game,” she said. “I don’t need to create this super crazy idea where I have to become someone I’m not and I’ve never been, and try to play the same as I have.

“It’s challenging not to get caught up in all of it, but you also have to recognize that it’s a big deal.”

RELATED: A swing reconstructed: Martin among the best despite irrepairable nerve damage

(With file from Mitch Bach, CHAT News Today)

Taste of Red Deer comes to CentreFest this Friday

CentreFest is teaming up with the Red Deer Regional Health Foundation’s to bring some new flavour to a popular event.

Taste of Red Deer is now a part of CentreFest and will bring delicious food tastings to the already popular event this Friday, July 26 from 6-9 p.m.

Officials say the partnership between the two organizations seemed a natural fit, both set on bringing young and old alike to Red Deer’s downtown core for unique entertainment, delicious food, and family fun!

“Taste of Red Deer has been a staple at Festival of Trees for years, and we decided to recreate it in the summertime,” shared Manon Therriault, CEO for the Red Deer Regional Health Foundation. “It just makes sense that two non-profit organizations would work together for the betterment of our community. We are very proud to have CentreFest as a partner.”

Taste of Red Deer will feature up to 30 Central Alberta restaurants, each sampling some of their best menu items. Guests will purchase food vouchers to spend on whatever tantalizes their taste buds. Proceeds from the Taste of Red Deer event will go directly to purchasing equipment for the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

“Our goal is to create an exciting family experience for Central Albertans, and our partners at Taste of Red Deer will add a new dimension to CentreFest that increases the excitement our event already creates,” explained Jan Penney, CentreFest Board Chair.

A full slate of CentreFest performers will be on hand Friday night to provide unique & fun-filled entertainment while guests sample an array of food items from local vendors.

Learn more at

(With file from media release)

Chuckwagons, fireworks cancelled on day three of Westerner Days

Westerner Days organizers have cancelled a pair of events scheduled for Friday, which is day three of the fair.

“The APCCA and Westerner Park have mutually agreed that The Red Deer Motors North American Pony Chuckwagons have been cancelled for this evening,” a statement reads.

“The safety of both the riders and the animals is of upmost importance to both organizations. After inspection of the track by both organizations we have mutually agreed to cancel the Chuckwagons for tonight.”

In addition, Friday’s fireworks have been postponed until tomorrow night due to weather conditions.

On day two of the fair, 11,862 people came through the gates, which is down substantially from day two of the fair in 2018. However, the weather was not conducive to Westerner Days enjoyment in the slightest.

Wednesday (day one) saw a slight increase in attendance from last year.

rdnewsNOW showcases the Westerner Days Grub Hub

Who doesn’t love fair food?

Westerner Days is on until Sunday, June 21, and when you’re there, make sure to stop by the rdnewsNOW Grub Hub where you’ll find many a type of culinary creations.

For the second year, the rdnewsNOW team hit up the Grub Hub to show you what’s cookin’…

Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre’s “Donate to Dunk”

RED DEER- Make a splash in your community by taking part in the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre’s”Donate to Dunk” event at Westerner Days.

Come on down to the fair grounds and take part in their first ever dunk tank fundraising effort.

This Thursday and Friday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. take your best shot for a good cause.

You’ll get three throws for $5 and all proceeds from the event are in support of the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre.

Can’t make it down to Westerner Days but still want to make a donation?

Head over to the donation Website and #DonateToDunk by following these steps:

1. Choose your donation amount – Any donation made equals three throws.
2. Pick your “Dunkee” – A number of community members are ready to be dunked.
3. Leave your name and a message if you would like them to know who is “virtually” dunking them.

There is a full line up of community “dunkees” including: RCMP members, Holly Erb, Ian Ihme, MJ Ball and Michelle Fritz.

The all-star dunk line-up includes Alex Wood, owner of Ryde RD, Landon Resta of MNP, Dustin Eckstrand, Josh Tarzwell from the Red Deer Rebels, and Mark Jones representing the CACAC.

Jazz at the Lake returns to Sylvan Lake

SYLVAN LAKE- The 17th annual Jazz at the Lake festival takes place August 16-18.

The town will host a variety of artists, the ever popular “Pubs & Clubs” event as well as the newly added “Party in the Park.”

Headliner Laila Biali (who recently won the JUNO for “Vocal Jazz Album of the Year”) is returning by popular demand.

“Party in the Park” takes place in Centennial Park Sunday afternoon.

Dance along to Saskatchewan bluesman Jack Semple and Argentinian keyboard phenom Gabriel Palatchi with their respective trios.

Admission is $10 for adults and free for kids.

In celebration of Woodstock’s 50th Anniversary – come dressed in your best 60’s flower power outfits.

Johnny Summers is back for the 11th year with his Little Big Band in a Swing Dance on Saturday night at the Legion.

“Pubs & Clubs” is also returning this year and will feature eight different live jazz and jazz-oriented bands at seven different venues around town.

Bands start at 4 p.m. and continue every half hour into late evening.

All admissions to this event are free.

Festival tickets are on sale now.

Visit for more information.

Rope for Hope Red Deer returns to support children with critical illnesses

An 84-year-old Red Deer man is aiming to be the top fundraiser in Canada at this Saturday’s third annual Rope for Hope Red Deer, a Make-A-Wish Foundation event held in support of children with critical illnesses.

Joe Hittel rappelled down 12 stories of Stantec Executive Place in downtown Red Deer last year, raising over $14,000 for Make-A-Wish Northern Alberta – the second highest fundraising amount in Canada.

RELATED: Dozens rappel down Stantec Executive Place in support of Make a Wish

This year, Hittell will join several others in rappelling down Executive Place on Saturday, and also up the ante by working to be the number one fundraiser across the nation.

“I’m going to be wearing my leprechaun suit like I did last year,” says Hittel. “This year, the second time around, I’ve heard lots of stories from customers that had Wish Kids and how happy they were to get their wishes granted. So with those stories, I just kept going and going and now I’m over $30,000.”

Hittel says that amount of money raised will allow for three children to have their wishes granted, costing roughly $10,000 to grant each wish.

“I had a phone call one night from Make-A-Wish and this young girl said, ‘Could I speak to Joe Hittel please?’ and I said, ‘You’re speaking to him.'” he recalls. “And she says, ‘I just want to thank you very much for all the work you’re doing for the Make-A-Wish Foundation,’ so that just brought tears to my eyes to hear that.”

In 2018, Hittel’s efforts allowed 16-year-old Anakin Suerink’s wish to come true – meeting his favourite characters from Star Wars and being presented with a trip to Walt Disney World by Darth Vader himself.

RELATED: Red Deer teen’s galactic dream comes true thanks to Make-A-Wish

“About a month later, Make-A-Wish had a party for us and I met him and his family and my family came down and we had quite an afternoon,” says Hittel. “That was another tearful afternoon. He was so happy.”

Hittel says his fundraising totals have come from the generous support of local businesses, raising money through silent auctions, online auctions and other events where local businesses have donated merchandise or portions of sales.

“I just went from business to business every day and kept on getting donations,” adds Hittel. “Some couldn’t do anything with the economy and some gave me more money than they did last year. The more news I heard from customers about their Wish Kids and stuff, the more it got me going.”

Jen Garden, Development and Events Coordinator for Make-A-Wish Northern Alberta says the event is a chance to achieve something great and help out a great cause at the same time, noting there are eight children in Red Deer currently waiting for a wish.

“People often have the sense of accomplishment because it’s counter-intuitive to rapel off a building,” says Garden. “There’s a lot of pride coming off of that event, so I’d like to see the rest of the Red Deer community come out and support these incredibly brave people who worked really hard at meeting that $1,500 minimum or go beyond that like we’ve seen with Joe and a whole bunch of other people.”

Communications and Marketing Officer Leanne Gullekson says a granted wish is a true game-changer for the kids that receive it.

“They get a chance to focus on something beyond doctors appointments and medical procedures,” explains Gullekson. “They get a chance to hang out with their family outside of a hospital setting and it gives them a chance to sort of remember what its like to just be a normal kid.”

Gullekson adds for the kids to know that donors and people they don’t even know are raising money to make it possible for them to have their wish, makes them feel the whole world is enveloping them.

“That’s really important for a kid whose living with an illness to know that people have their back.”

The third annual Rope for Hope Red Deer takes place Saturday, July 20 at Stantec Executive Place in downtown Red Deer (4900 50 Street).

Registration runs from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. with the event itself running from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

According to the Make-A-Wish Rope for Hope website, this year’s fundraising goal is $68,700.

So far, over $44,000 has been raised or 65 per cent of the organization’s fundraising goal.

What you need to know for the Westerner Days Parade

What you need to know for the Westerner Days Parade

The Westerner Days Fair & Exposition Parade, the traditional kick-off to Central Alberta’s largest summer celebration, gets underway at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday.

Over 30,000 people are expected to line the streets of downtown Red Deer to enjoy the decorated floats and vehicles, collector vehicles, local celebrities, marching bands and livestock entries as they meander through the heart of Red Deer.

What you need to know for the Westerner Days Parade 2

Multiple road closures, traffic detours and transit disruptions will be in effect during the parade.

Roadways on the parade route will be closed from approximately 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and parking will not be permitted along the parade route.

When it comes to city transit, the last departure from Sorensen Station prior to the parade will be at 8:45 a.m., while the last arrival into Sorensen Station prior to the parade will be at 9:10 a.m. The first departure from Sorensen Station after the parade will be at 12:15 p.m.

There will be no transit service during the parade with a couple of exceptions. They include Route 12 and 2A South Connector which will continue to run from Bower Mall.

Bolt will depart at 9:15 a.m. from 49 Avenue and 54 Street.

Transit users can visit to look up schedules, get up to date departure times and see where buses are in real-time with GPS tracking.

If you can’t make it to the parade in person, or want to watch it all over again, rdnewsNOW will have the parade available for viewing in its entirety starting on Thursday.

Gord Bamford Charity Golf Classic returns for 12th year

The Gord Bamford Foundation is pleased to announce the 12th Annual Charity Golf Classic, will be taking place August 7-8, 2019 at the Cambridge Hotel Resort & Conference Centre in Red Deer.

JEDCO Energy Services Corp is returning as the presenting sponsor for the two-day event.

This year’s emcee is Paul McGuire, formerly of ET Canada. The star-studded gala includes appearances from sports icons and performances from Canadian country music stars Gord Bamford, Jess Moskaluke, Aaron Pritchett and JoJo Mason.

“No other event in Canada is doing what we are doing. We bring in top athletes, exciting acts, and incredible experiences to be bid on during our auction. The goal is to create a unique experience every year. Every year the organizing committee does an incredible job. I am so grateful to have the team I do, they see my vision and my passion to support kids and communities,” said Gord Bamford.

“We anticipate raising enough funds to make a difference in the lives of 1000’s of kids this year. Thanks to everyone for their support over the years – I look forward to the 12th Annual!”

Hosted by Bamford, the gala evening will see an auction packed with unique items and delicious dinner for attendees. The second day will see a full day of golf at the beautiful Lacombe Golf & Country Club.

The charity golf classic is the primary source of fundraising for the Gord Bamford Foundation, with an incredible $469,720 raised at 2018’s sold out event. The funds raised were shared between the MusiCounts, Big Brothers Big Sisters – Lacombe, Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre, and supported music therapy programs is childrens’ hospitals across Canada.

To date, the Gord Bamford Foundation has raised over 3.6 million dollars to support organizations making a difference in children’s lives across Canada. Aligning with the mission of the Foundation all funds raised are used to support youth-centered initiatives that include or involve music, education, healthcare, sports, and multi-use facilities.