Recently, a very special presentation was made to Howie Chamberlin who is past president of the McLeese Lake Recreation Society.
While reluctantly accepting the gift, Howie was very humble when we spoke stating that he is accepting the gift on behalf of everyone who has helped with the hall in the past.
Many McLeese Lake residents have been involved with the hall and the events that have been held there in the past.
These participants include the many volunteers who have given up their time, donated equipment, donated auction items, been a part of organized work bees, been an audience member raising their hands at auctions or sitting and enjoying the Mother’s Day breakfasts and the pot luck dinners.
“Everyone has been a part of the community hall in the past,” Chamberlain said.
He is very proud of each and every member of the community who has helped out in their own way. Howie went back in his memory and named so many people who have paved the way for the successful running of the hall.
When we spoke, he started saying names starting way back in 1977 and going forward through the many years up until the present day.
He said if you made a list of people who have helped in the past, the list would be as long as the road from the hall to the local store.
Howie was very instrumental in the past several years in obtaining provincial grant money and local donations from several people and organizations in both Williams Lake and McLeese Lake to beautify the hall building and grounds and the kiosk and downtown areas of McLeese Lake. While making the presentation to Howie, Jackie King, secretary of the McLeese Lake Recreation Society stated that over the decades, the hall has seen many changes from ground breaking to what we see today.
A group of people had a vision to create a centre for everyone in the community to enjoy.
There may have been bumps along the way, but the main focus will always be to make it a place to congregate, celebrate and enjoy.
Jackie went on to say: “Undergoing new leadership is challenging and right now we are taking baby steps in an attempt to fill very large shoes, but we will keep moving forward one step at a time.”
Without Howie’s continual efforts with government and without the continual assistance from the Cariboo Regional District, in particular, Deb Bischoff, Steve Forseth and Darron Campbell, this would never have happened.
Everyone is so grateful and proud, especially when you drive up Forglen Road and look and see the revitalized McLeese Lake Hall building standing tall, for all to see and use.
So, Mr. Chamberlin, though you feel you do not deserve a thank you for all that you have done, many disagree and hope you enjoy your gift of a beautiful locally handcrafted outdoor chair and table set. You are wished nothing but the best!