Monthly Theme: Beginnings

Welcome, 2017. A lot of people have been anticipating your arrival.

It feels so wonderful to be back to the routine, in a new year, despite the arctic weather than refuses to shove off.

Here at Tenth, we considered but decided against a year-in-review post. We’re focused on looking forward. A fresh beginning. It’s why we’ve chosen “beginnings” as our theme this month and we encourage you to share with Tenth readers your thoughts on “beginnings” in the comments. You can also see the end of this post for ways you can help contribute to the site.

Here in New Westminster, the community starts the year with a peculiar immediate need. The Arenex, a beloved part of our community, has collapsed due to the accumulated weight of the snow. I know many people are waiting to hear what exactly happened, but there have been hints that the new roof’s insulative properties may have contributed to the snow not melting fast enough. We all await the engineer’s reports. A huge kudos to the staff members who took action when they heard unusual noises of creaking. So many people would have just ignored it. Their actions ensured that no one was injured.

It’s so unexpected, isn’t it? “Collapsed due to the weight of the snow” is nowhere near the top of my list of possible building failures here in our southern West Coast town. I would have expected earthquake (see also Richard McBride) or even arson before “snow weight”. For so many now, the return to routine also begins the work of relocating and rebuilding clubs and programs that relied on this community resource. Clubs like the Shasta Trampoline who have lost essential training equipment (there’s a gofundme campaign to replace their equipment if you’re able to help). A Facebook Group has been created to share memories and I am loving reading all the stories—especially of things I didn’t know much about, like the boxing club and the rifle range, or of important moments in the lives of New Westers: first steps, first awards, first friends. The Arenex’s future is a story I’ll personally be following closely. It does represent an interesting beginning for our community.

This month also marks an important month to consider ourselves. You don’t need to make resolutions, but I find January the most perfect time to start something new or refresh a part of my home with a bit of decluttering. On Boxing Day, we all went through our drawers and closets to find clothes and shoes to donate, and I went through my overstuffed craft cupboard to do something more meaningful with unused supplies.

We hope the stories we bring this month inspire you in some small way to begin something afresh, too.

One little bit of housekeeping: we’re looking for volunteers interested in helping our site. We know the site is well trafficked and that people search for community information – lots of it. Not a week goes by when someone doesn’t come looking for the “best barber in New West”. The reality is that although the print magazine is slowly gaining some traction, the website doesn’t generate revenue and unfortunately falls to the bottom of my list after family and paid work, where it competes for precious time allocated to volunteering for a number of causes. If you’re itching to write or get involved where you live or work, we offer a lot of flexibility and support to get you going on contributing, including story ideas and editing support. I am constantly asked to cover stuff in the community—whether it is events or fundraisers or new businesses or new ventures or new societies or important issues—and there’s just no way for me to get to all of the requests. A lot of the groups that ask for coverage aren’t able to muster the volunteer power to write about it themselves, so this is a really great way to contribute. Get in touch with me if you can help.