We sincerely hope this message finds you and your loved ones well and in good health. We are currently facing an unprecedented situation and we must all, each in our own way, take the necessary steps to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
You have probably heard but just in case… We are saddened to announce that the 38th annual Filberg Festival originally scheduled for July 31 – August 3, 2020, will be postponed until August 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the extension of the BC government’s measures limiting large gatherings. To our patrons, partners, sponsors and volunteers, we are extremely grateful for your support. It is also important to recognize that donations are vital to meeting the operating funds needed to preserve and maintain the heritage site. Without your contributions the FHLPA would not exist. We thank you for your ongoing support and ask you to consider making a donation to ensure that the legacy of the Park and its integral role in our community continues. If you wish to donate please go to www.filberg.com and click on the “Make A Donation”button. We thank you for your continued support.
The lodge has been closed since March 16th in an effort to keep everyone safe. Our Executive Director Eden Lindsay-Bodie is working part time from home and our Facilities Manager Joe Julien continues to maintain and protect our valuable heritage site. The Lodge phone number continues to be answered by Eden from her home. To keep everyone informed below are some other issues we continue to work on:
you are aware the Filberg’s Annual General Meeting was postponed due to the order in place concerning public gatherings. We are investigating several options to conduct this meeting however we have been informed by the BC Registrar that we can extend the time frame to hold this meeting until December 31st. Once the order is lifted and we feel it safe to do so we will reschedule the AGM.
Kevin Moore after 11 years of dedicated service to the Board is stepping down but not stepping away. Kevin has been a valuable addition to the board of directors, and we are fortunate that he will stay on the Maintenance and Preservation Committee. This way we won’t lose his multiple abilities and knowledge he brings both to the organization and specifically to the preservation of our buildings and site.
We are bringing on two new board members – Cheryl Edmunson and Melanie Whittall to round out the skill sets of our board. A motion will be made at the AGM to accept these two members as well as John Mang who joined our board after the March 2019 AGM. As you may be aware John has become an integral member of our board in a very short time providing his expertise to several task forces for the Board.
Cheryl Edmunsonmoved to Comox in January of 2018 to join the executive team of Waypoint Insurance where she is currently the Director of Operations and Human Resources. Prior to this move Cheryl spent the majority of her 32-year insurance career working in Vancouver, most recently as Vice President of Economical Insurance. Her prior work experience has been largely focused on Operations. Critical to these roles was a focus on strategic thinking, service measurement/delivery and financial planning. Cheryl’s most notable strengths are in leading teams and mentoring. Cheryl describes her move to the Comox Valley as nothing short of inspirational and she adores her new life in the Valley. As she approaches semi retirement later this year, she is looking for a volunteer opportunity because of her desire to give back to this great community. Cheryl continues to be captivated by the beauty and tranquility found at Filberg as she is a regular visitor and proud member. In the past she has been on the Board of Crime Stoppers and the Dixon Society. In addition, she has been a Section Chair for the United Way and has held leadership roles in various insurance industry committees and organizations. In her spare time Cheryl enjoys reading, exercising and spending time with friends and family. She is excited to start giving back and helping in the community where she lives.
Melanie Whittallis an established entrepreneur with a 22-year background in sales and marketing as owner of Ocean and Outdoors Sales. Her expertise over the years has been introducing international products into the Canadian sport and outdoor markets, selling to diverse retail markets across western Canada and nationally. Fuelled by passion and energy Melanie’s success has been a result of relationship building, focus marketing, meeting needs and sometime some good ole patience! Over the years – all roads have led to Comox. In 2019 Melanie returned to the family home finding Comox as a community which carries a strong respect for its past. She has a deep affection and gratitude for all that has been done to preserve this unique site. Bringing extensive experience in sales and marketing she hopes to help contribute, preserve and represent the FHLPA and its members. Melanie’s past board experience includes BC Sports Rep Association, HUB Cycle Coalition, Canadian Outrigger Association. In addition, she has worked with the 2010 Winter Olympic committee, various NORDIC Canada events and the Banff Mountain Film Festival. Melanie, as a grand daughter to Bob Filberg, is overwhelmed and humbled to be back at the Filberg Lodge and Park – a place of her childhood.
JohnMangis a veteran broadcaster, musician, recording engineer, producer and project operations director. Starting classical piano at age nine, and later playing rock, jazz and R&B into his university years, John has always maintained a keen interest in music and event production, which led to a position at CBC. During his broadcast career, John produced and engineered drama, classical, jazz and popular music recordings, along with countless music, sports and news related remote and special event productions. Migrating to management, John oversaw regional and network radio, television and network operations and programming in Winnipeg and Vancouver, including special event activities at the 1999 Pan Am Games, the CBC Winnipeg Comedy Festival, the 2010 Olympics, Vancouver Island MusicFest, and many more. Since leaving CBC in 2011 and moving to the Comox Valley, John has been busy as an operations and entertainment consultant, working on various festival projects including Comox Nautical Days for 7-years and the BC Seafood Festival as Director of Site Operations for the last 4-years. Musically, John remains active producing and performing in several local ensembles, enjoys performing emcee duties, and has been a judge on the Juno Awards committee for both Producer of the Year and Large Ensemble (orchestra) Of the Year.
As you know the Gift Shop has been closed since we closed the Lodge – we are convinced that once we reopen it will once again flourish.
A message from Val Graham:“Greetings from the Filberg Gift Shop. These are troubling times and I welcome this opportunity to touch base with all of our volunteers and Friends of the Gift Shop. We miss being open and miss the personnel contact with all our loyal staff. Hopefully we can open soon and continue to make our contribution to The Filberg Park and Lodge. In my Haida Language…. Howaa, dii tuuwii kuyaasisis. Thank You Precious Friends. Daman an hl king. Really you watch”. Cheers, Val Graham
The Cutting Garden Volunteers have been busy planting spring flowers and have started making bouquets. Keep an eye on the Lodge Facebook page so you will know when there are fresh bouquets in the cart, usually every couple of days. Our thanks to the remarkable duo of Ann Marie Bowen and Sharon Rouleaux who have organized their team while practicing social distancing.
We are in regular contact with both the Town of Comox and the Parks Department to ensure we are following their guidelines and happy to report the Park has remained open to the Public. Joe has reported that all visitors he has witnessed are following the social distancing guidelines. I have been in contact with Mayor Russ Arnott to explain our current financial situation and will keep him updated. Additionally, we are monitoring any funding that may be available from both the Federal and Provincial Governments as they become available.
Most other initiatives such as the Heritage Tree program, the roof for the kitchen arbour and the construction of the upper arbour are on hold for the time being. We are thrilled to report that the Rotary Club of Courtenay advanced us $10,000.00 (of the $40,000 grant) to pay for the materials which are currently stored at the lumber yard from where they were purchased.
If you are in the Park for a walk be sure to check out the new bench. Made by our own Joe Julien (Facility Manager) out of a tree that had to be removed last summer. WTG Joe!
The Park is open daily from 7 am to 7 pm for visitors. Please obey the social distancing requirements while in the Park and please remember that dogs are not allowed in the Park at any time.
We hope to see you all in the very near future, until then stay safe and healthy!