Axe throwing activity on its way

Entrepreneur and new Delburne resident, Krushyn Grape, introduced himself and his business, Killerstix, to members of the Delburne village council at their regular meeting on May 9. Grape makes custom axes for axe throwing events and competitions.

Axe throwing has become a very popular activity in the United States and is growing in popularity in Canada.

Currently a correctional officer in Red Deer, Grape’s immediate plan is to bring axe throwing to local events, and then create mobile units that can be taken on the road to towns throughout the region.

His goal is to ‘take fun’ to the communities rather than parents having to drive their kids to larger centers. His long-term goal would be a store front location in Delburne where axes would be made and sold.

“Competition is a good outlet for kids”, said Grape. “Being in law enforcement, it’s been a shame to see kids struggling through the pandemic when there is no outlet for them to engage in sport.”

Vice Principal, Stephen Bank, of the Delburne Centralized school is in discussion with Grape about introducing axe throwing as an after-school program.

Use of the batting cages is being considered for the venue.

Grape, when questioned by council, said “a temporary axe throwing facility could possibly be set up for the July 1 celebrations”.

Council will get Grape a schedule of all upcoming events and said they would help in any way they could.

Unsightly properties
An updated nuisance bylaw is in process. To aid council, Cst. Irv Heide, Red Deer County Patrol was in attendance to give an overview of the legal and practical challenges of enforcing unsightly property bylaws.

Cst. Heide said the objective of bylaw enforcement officers is to resolve the situation as uneventful as possible.

“What a nuisance is to one or two people may not be seen as an offence to another”, said Heide. He advised a bylaw re-write will take a lot of discussion and legal experts to best define elements needed should the matter reach the courts.

He reminded councillors that nuisance bylaws are always subjective and open to court interpretations.

Cst. Heide recommended that the first step when receiving a complaint is a verbal conversation with both the complainant and the subject of the complaint. If the complainant wants to remain invisible, it always makes resolution more difficult.

Fawn Meadows
CAO, Karen Fagan, on the direction of council met with Dave Dittrick, director of planning for the Red Deer County, to seek his advice on how to handle the architectural guidelines that were never in the Land Use bylaw for Fawn Meadows.

Dittrick’s advice was to eliminate the guidelines altogether as they were not put into a bylaw 20+ years ago and the development is now two-thirds done.

He said there are contraventions of the current guidelines and those contraventions align with the current bylaw so they really are not contraventions.

A motion was unanimously made to send out letters to Fawn Meadow homeowners with the information received from Red Deer County Planning.

The by-law amendment to include the architectural guidelines in the land use bylaw has received first reading.

Few tweaks required
CAO Fagan reported that the Municipal Accountability Program went very well with only a few tweaks required.

Overall Municipal Affairs was very impressed with how things are run. They did indicate that Delburne was not allowed to separate policing on a separate line in its Tax Rate bylaw. The explanation given was that policing was not a requisition, it was an invoice.

When Fagan questioned whether payment of the invoice was optional, the answer was no.

“I think when we have no choice but to pay, our residents need to know where the money is going”, said Fagan.

Council agreed, policing would be listed as a separate item. Many other municipalities are taking the same stance.

“They’re trying to hide it (policing costs) from the residents”, concluded Mayor Wilson.

Coun. Faulk made a motion to donate $500 to the Dolly Parton Imagination Library which received unanimous support. Coun. Faulk emphasized the importance of this reading initiative being spearheaded by Suzanne Seufert.

Public Works
Public Works foreman, Gary Rusaw opened the conversation on whether council was pleased with the street cleaning.

Two councillors reported that the quality didn’t seem as good as other years and Coun. Faulk suggested the sweeper seemed to need a new brush.

Two quotes were received for street cleaning this season, one at $10,000 and the accepted quote at $3,200. Given the current contractor is so reasonable, Mayor Wilson suggested that maybe the council should share the cost of getting a new brush over accepting a much higher quote.

When recycling was introduced, the objective was to reduce the number of black garbage bags from five to three and save tipping fees.

Council learned this reduction has not happened.

Council did not reach any consensus on reducing the number of allowed bags, but will discuss further at the Committee of the Whole.

New limits on height and weight of garbage cans have been introduced by E360.

Rusaw said, “E360 has a right to have concerns about that.” His calculations show that the collector is lifting approximately 25,000 pounds of garbage a day.

For the 2023 budget year, Public Works will include a budget request for the purchase of a used dump trailer that is larger, and hopefully with lower sides, to replace the current yard waste recycling trailer.

The new garbage cans for the park have been well received.

The purchase of portable speed signs is still on the radar. CAO Fagan is looking for grants and Coun. Andy Folks continues to investigate different types of signs and talk with communities using portable speed signs.

Brenda Schimke
ECA Review

About the author

Brenda Schimke

Schimke is a Graduate with Distinction from the University of Alberta with a BCom degree. She has lived and worked in Alberta, BC and Ontario.