I often say one of the best things about living and working in Sun Peaks is that everyone has made a very deliberate decision to live where they do, which generally translates into an engaged and positive population. Throughout the last year many residents, such as myself, have a renewed sense of gratitude for the place we call home. Its rural location, access to outdoor recreation and close knit connections have all contributed to my general sense of safety and community throughout a very challenging year. Like many people and organizations, the team here at SPIN is finishing up 2020 with both a sigh of relief and a deep sense of gratitude.
While the events of the pandemic keep coming, I truly admire the sense of resilience Sun Peaks has. In a tourism-reliant community, it’s no easy task to find the balance between protecting collective community health and the economic realities of remaining open for business. However, business owners, staff and residents have continued to do their part to keep the village going and welcome guests as safely as possible. There is no blueprint to follow, only constant revisions to ongoing, flexible plans.
While no one is able to claim perfection in the midst of such chaos, as a resident and business owner I’ve appreciated Sun Peaks Resort’s measured approach to operating in the midst of the pandemic. It’s been expensive and difficult to keep the community and staff safe while keeping the lifts, and with that our local economy, running. Other village businesses have also come together to do their best. And I know, if it comes to it, we will close down again if it’s deemed necessary.
I’d like to thank those individuals and businesses who have adopted the values of transparency and open communication, placing community health over individual discomfort or short-term business profits. People and workplaces have spoken up and shared their experiences of positive test results from the early days of the pandemic in March to as recently as yesterday. While some may see this as fear mongering or spreading unnecessary panic, we know that being open and upfront regarding instances of infection is one of the best defenses we have against spreading the disease. No matter what happens in the coming days and weeks, I believe that in hindsight these early decisions will have made a difference.
I’m grateful to the leaders who have emerged in our community. From those who helped set up a new social services organization and food cupboard, to our local health care, mental health and emergency workers, to business owners and tourism operators implementing creative safety solutions, I’ve been continually impressed with those who are willing to go the extra mile in such difficult conditions. Thank you to all those who have helped out their neighbours, showed extra patience with front line staff and kept essential services going through the worst of it. I know our community appreciates the extra effort.
I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has supported our local journalism this year; whether it was financial, mental, or emotional, your contributions have made all the difference in our ability to keep providing community news. This year we’ve been able to produce more journalism than ever before and it’s all thanks to our readers, supporters, clients and community members.
I’m also greatly appreciative to my team here, whose flexibility and perseverance, combined with a strong dedication to their roles as community journalists, has enabled me to keep this publication going. There have been some tough moments, and the road ahead isn’t a guaranteed smooth journey, but I’m happy to have them by my side through it all.