A little inside baseball: Here at the Campbell River Mirror, we reporters work rotating weekends.
There are four of us – including the editor – so once a month we each cover things that are happening over the weekend, and we get the following Friday off to make up for it.
Good news: Once per month – on top of the one weekend almost every month that’s already a long weekend – we get a long weekend. Sometimes those fall on the same weekend and we get a four-day!
Bad news: Once per month we don’t actually get a weekend.
Sometimes, however, that weekend coverage is absolutely delightful and doesn’t feel like work at all.
Take this past weekend, for example.
On Friday night (and a couple of other times over the course of the weekend) I went to the rink to watch the first Campbell-River-hosted Vancouver Island Interclub Figure Skating Competition in nine years and speak with the organizers.
Instead of going on and on about, “look at how woderful our skaters are,” which they could have done, because they absolutely were, the president of the local skating club touted the importance of the community itself in getting it pulled together on a tight timeline and thanked the businesses and volunteers who made it possible.
On Saturday, I was at the Judo Club Christmas Market – part of the annual Christmas Gift Tour that happens every year. Organizer Katharine Wellard, instead of talking about how great all the vendors were (which, honestly, she could have spoken about at great length and not have been overselling it), talked about the importance of the Judo Club itself to the community and how great all the vendors felt to be doing their part to be helping out the club.
Saturday night, I was at the Campbell River Hospital Foundation’s Timebenders Dinner and Dance.
Guess what the overarching tone of that event was? That’s right. It was about the community coming together to help a great cause.
And that was just from what I was at this weekend.
On top of that, last week was also the dropoff week for shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child, the initiative by Samaritan’s Purse to collect goods for children in places like Nicaragua and Sierra Leone, the opening of the Knights of Columbus Christmas Fund depot in Campbell River Common, and the announcement of the day that Swicked Cycles would team up – yet again – with Boston Pizza to raise money for bikes to donate to the upcoming Angel Tree initiative.
And sure, many of these things are obviously because we’re coming up on the holiday season, but it’s like that a lot of weekends over the course of the year.
I remember one weekend this past summer, for example, where I went to at least three separate fundraisers that were all extremely well attended and had organizers more thankful that “the newspaper guy” came to the event so they could formally thank the community for its amazing support than they were about being able to tout their cause and drum up more support for their next thing.
And the first week of this year’s edition of the Carihi Mirror, I had a student pitch the idea that they’d like to do a story on how many community-based initiatives the students at that school take on each year, because she didn’t think they got enough attention for that.
Oh, and that’s not to mention there’s a fundraiser running right now for a local young man battling brain cancer that’s currently sitting at approximately $370,000 and a group that serves dinner to anyone who needs it every night in the downtown core.
I guess what I’m getting at is this: I appreciate you, Campbell River.
I appreciate that despite your flaws, you step up when asked and do what needs to be done, give out of your own pockets even when you aren’t asked, and join forces to help others.
A rising tide raises all boats, as they say. Keep it up.
(And yes, I know I don’t even have to say that, because it’s not like you were planning on stopping anytime soon.)