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Kanigan Pommel

(Photo - Canada Gymnastics)

The Canada Games are a national multi-sport competition with participation from every province and territory in Canada. The Games are held every two years, alternating between winter and summer. The 2019 Canada Winter Games were held between February 15 and March 3 in Red Deer, bringing together approximately 3600 athletes, coaches, and managers from every province and territory to compete in 19 sports.

Team BC sent a delegation of 349, athletes, coaches, managers and mission staff to represent the Province in Red Deer.

Of those members, only one calls Merritt, BC home. That would be gymnast Drew Kanigan.

“Probably just how much fun I had with the team and obviously the competition was great, a good experience. It was cool to compete against the best people in Canada,” Kanigan said would be his lasting memory from the games.

Drew set himself a goal before the games to finish top three in two of his events. Unfortunately, he didn’t quite achieve that goal, but he did finish top 7 in three events.

“People there are up to 19 years-old and I’m only 16 so I was pretty happy,” said Kanigan.

Drew placed fourth on the high bar, sixth on parallel bars and seventh on the pommel horse.

“So, I had a great routine (on high bar), probably the best one of my life,” said Kanigan of his 4th place finish.

“I came 6th on the parallel bars, had a good routine, but I took a little bit of a step on my dismount so that cost me a little bit," said Kanigan.

“I was kind of hoping to make the final on pommel, I qualified in last place. I’m good at pommel in training but it’s such a hard event to compete in. I actually fell in finals, had a funny fall in finals,” chuckled Kanigan.

Outside of his own competitions Drew took advantage of the Games to take in some other elite events.

“We watched some long and short track speed skating, and wheel chair basketball, table tennis and hockey and ringette,” said Kanigan.

Ringette was his favourite moment from the games outside of his own events.

His favourite moment he did take part in was the Opening Ceremonies.

“It was amazing, we were the first province to walk in and everybody was cheering and there were lost of lights and it was in a huge stadium,” said Kanigan.

It’s non-stop for Drew, who is set to leave this Tuesday February 12th for an international event in Calgary. And later this year he will be headed to Nationals looking to improve on his silver medal performance on the parallel bars.

“Nationals is going to be a great competition, I have some high hopes,” said Kanigan. “Hoping to improve on that finish (silver on parallel bars) and medal in some other events too.”

Look out for a Drew Kanigan spotlight this Tuesday with Jesse Pakulat.


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On Twitter: @Q101Merritt


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Womens Day

Friday March 8th is International Women’s day. This year’s theme is #BalanceForBetter, and the campaign isn’t just for Women’s day but a year-round initiative. The goal of the campaign is to provide a unified direction to guide and galvanize continuous collective action, with #BalanceforBetter activity reinforced and amplified all year.

Here in Merritt a celebration is set to be held at the Nicola Valley Evangelical Free Church, starting at 6:30 pm. This will be the 15th year that the Nicola Valley Women in Action Board is hosting the celebration.

The event is completely free to attend, and board member Megan Fulcher spoke to Q101 about what those who attend can expect.

“There will be an opening speak by Dave McCauley followed by the honouring ceremony,” said Megan.

Six women are set to recognized at the celebration.

“Each nominee has asked somebody in their life, who has a good picture of who they are and how they walk in the world, to share some thoughts about them,” said Megan. “So, the nominee gets to sit back, and people get to talk about how great they are.”

Megan also shared the inspiration behind the event.

“There’s lots of people doing really great things in Merritt and It’s an opportunity for us to recognize some of them,” said Megan. “So many of the nominees, they were quite surprised that they were nominated and didn’t even think what they were doing was a bid deal to anybody. But somebody was influenced in a positive way by their actions. So, it’s just a platform for people to express gratitude.”

The evening will conclude with snacks and coffee and an opportunity for those in attendance to mingle.


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Dan Albas

(Photo -

The next Federal general election is right around the corner with Canadians heading to the polls on October 21, 2019.

Here in the riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola Conservative incumbent Dan Albas is set to run for re-election.

“I’m acclaimed as the conservative candidate for the great riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola and I’ll be looking forward to debating the issues and presenting myself and Andrew Scheer’s positive conservative vision in the upcoming election,” said MP Albas.

Albas is currently championing a couple initiatives in Ottawa.

“I started an all-party credit union caucus, because there are a lot of credit union members in BC and in Ottawa there is not a lot of attention paid to the important role in our rural communities credit unions play,” said Albas. “Also, I’m going to be tabling legislation soon in regard to how we can improve some of the concerns around floods.”

Albas will be up against Liberal Candidate Mary Ann Murphy, an associate professor at UBC Okanagan. As well as Brynn A. Jones from the Marijuana party. The NDP and Greens have not announced candidates.


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city hall

On Tuesday evening the City of Merritt hosted an open house about the 2019 budget. It was an opportunity for public to ask questions and spark conversations with councillors and city staff. I was also an opportunity for council to see more from staff on some of their budget proposal for this year.

Councillor Mike Bhangu spoke to Q101 after the event about his views on the on-going budget process.

“The big concern is every year, how much money do we have, can all of this be fulfilled", said Bhangu. “Even with the Fire Department they need that equipment to keep their folks safe. And we looked at the engineering department, they have some serious concerns there too. They all need to be addressed it comes down to do we have the money to do it.”

The Fire Department is looking for money to help replace old and damaged turnout gear, self-contained breathing apparatus’ and even a new pumper truck.

In engineering, concern was raised regarding the cities aging infostructure which includes a lot of systems built back in the 1960s.

Councillor Bhangu agreed it City has a difficult balancing act ahead of them.

“We need the majority of the things each department presented. But where to we find the money,” said Bhangu. “What’s the best approach that fits our budget.”

“My priority list is the cities priority list, it’s what the people want. I didn’t run on any personal agenda, I have no interest groups that I’m representing. My interest groups are the the citizens of Merritt. So, anything and everything that benefits them, I’m in favour for,” concluded Bhangu.


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For sale

Earlier this week the Vancouver Real Estate Board released a report saying that the price of a detached home in Metro Vancouver fell nearly 10 per cent in February on a year-over-year basis.

The latest benchmark price of a detached home in now $1,443,100. While townhomes are fetching $789,300 and condos $1,016,600.

Merritt is facing a similar downturn, but the root cause may be different. While in Vancouver the cooling market is due to an increase of sellers listing their properties here in Merritt it’s the exact opposite. John Isaac Managing Broker for Royal LePage Merritt spoke to Q101 about the local situation.

“The last three years have been very good in number of sales,” said Isaac. “The winter months it always slows up here but right now we’re facing a very low inventory.”

Isaac did confirm that they to are down more than 10 percent from December of 2018 through February of this year.

“Up here, that’s because we’re often seasonal and it slows in the winter months,” said Isaac. “For us I think its seasonal and a lack of inventory.”


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