National Communities in Bloom judges Larry Hall and Berta Briggs in front of the CiB mosaic at the Heritage Park on Railway. Photo: Barbara Roden is year’s Scotts Best Garden and Best Bloomin’ Business winners (clockwise from bottom): Ashcroft Apartment and Motel; 1407 Riverside Drive; 1203 Vista Heights Drive; 628 Cedar Crescent; 115 Bancroft Street; 1342 Western Avenue; and 58 Mesa Vista Court. Photos by Ina Gory, Paulette Thille, and Barbara Roden.

CiB judges had a busy time in Ashcroft as they toured the Village and saw the sites

Ashcroft is once again competing in the National ‘Class of Champions’ category

By Andrea Walker

The Village of Ashcroft is competing in the Communities in Bloom National competition in the “Class of Champions” category for small populations. The Class of Champions category is for those communities that have already won the National competition for their population category (Ashcroft won in 2013), so the competitors are all past winners.

Ashcroft gave a warm welcome to Communities in Bloom National judges Berta Briggs from Wetaskawin, Alberta and Larry Hall of Buena Vista, Saskatchewan, who were in our community from July 24–26.

Upon their arrival on July 24, after settling in to their local accommodations, the judges were taken for an early supper before attending a community Meet and Greet held in Heritage Park. There they were introduced to Village representatives and local citizens, and were pleased to assist the local CiB group present awards to several local residents and business owners.

Ashcroft Communities in Bloom is pleased to announce the following awards for 2019.

For the Scotts-sponsored Best Residential Garden award:

1203 Vista Heights (Tina and Matthew Burgess)

#58 Mesa Vista Court (Val and Bill Martin)

1342 Western Ave (Tracy and Dan Leisch)

1407 Riverside Drive (Jim Mertel and Mark Armstrong)

115 Bancroft Street (Randy and Linda Leiter)

628 Cedar Crescent (Michael and Cher Daum)

These residents received a congratulatory letter from Scotts Canada, garden care products from Scotts, and a lovely sign to proudly place in their yard. Our committee had quite a job touring throughout Ashcroft before making the difficult decision as to the winners. Ashcroft has many lovely, neat, and well-tended residences which portray pride from the owners in where they live. Congratulations all!

The Best Bloomin’ Business Award for 2019 was awarded to Ashcroft Apartments and Motel. This business has wonderful live-in caretakers, and their pride in the business shows. Neatly landscaped grounds, vibrant flowers, and tidy premises made this an easy choice for the CiB committee. Congratulations!

Ashcroft’s Best Street for 2019 is Bancroft Street. From the Village office at the south end to overlooking the bridge at the north end, the residents of this street have shown pride in their premises. Neat yards, tidy, well-kept homes, vibrant flowers, and healthy vegetable plots combine with the bright floral planters at the Village office and xeriscaped landscaping at the Community Hall to make this street a pleasure to call home.A sign proclaiming this as the “2019 Best Street” will be added to the present Bancroft Street sign at 6th Street.

Thursday, July 25 saw the judges up bright and early to begin their extensive tour of Ashcroft. The tour includes historical sites, community parks, a look at business premises and residential streets, and how the municipality takes care of the Village. They look at bylaws and practices, and talk to business owners, municipal workers, and even people on the street. They want to know how the community works together, how youth are involved, how do we look after our heritage, how are we doing with environmental issues, and how we are doing overall as a Village, just to name a few areas.

There is a huge amount of information that is covered and places that the judges see in the full day that they are here. We are judged/rated as a Village on everything we do, and later in the fall we will receive our “report card” or evaluation and we learn how we were graded in all these areas and more. The judges will provide comments on what we are doing well and not so well, and will provide recommendations on how we can improve and what we can improve on.

The evaluation is an excellent tool to work from and to assist us in making our community an even better one. Communities in Bloom is not just about flowers, as the name may imply, but it is all about making your community the best it can be: about making your community “bloom”.

The Ashcroft Communities in Bloom committee works closely with the Village and other community groups to help make our community a better place. We are always looking for new members to join the committee, and no, you don’t need to know all about flowers in order to join!

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This year’s CiB Best Bloomin’ Business is the Ashcroft Apartment and Motel. Photo: Barbara Roden

Scotts Best Garden at 115 Bancroft Street.

Scotts Best Garden at 628 Cedar Crescent.

Scotts Best Garden at 1203 Vista Heights Drive.

Scotts Best Garden at 1342 Western Avenue.

Scotts Best Garden at 1407 Riverside Drive. (from left) Homeowners Mark Armstrong and Jim Mertel, and CiB committee member Ina Gory.

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