Get out and vote

When I first saw that Fort Frances was among the 20 finalists for this year’s “Kraft Celebration Tour” a few weeks ago, I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised.
It’s not that I dismissed the successful bid of club members Patrick Briere and Ron Silver, or the one which Muskie curler Hailey Beaudry submitted, or anything like that.
Rather, I think my surprise was that Fort Frances prevailed over a number of larger communities to be one of the final bids standing, which has been great to see.
Once it actually set in that our town would be going up against Dryden for a live taping of TSN’s SportsCentre, though, I was immediately was concerned that the anchor duo that we were going to get if the vote was successful was the tandem of Rod Smith and Kate Beirness.
It’s nothing against those two, but they are replacing Jay Onrait and Dan O’Toole on this year’s “Kraft” tour since the latter duo currently is getting ready to work for the new Fox Sports 1 network south of the border after they finished up with TSN at the end of June.
For as much as SportsCentre is a sports highlight show, Jay and Dan turned it into a nightly comedic train-wreck, which was even crazier when they did the “tour” tapings as they often would do stage dives and have the audience participate in the show for no apparent reason.
However, it will be Jennifer Hedger and Darren Dutchyshen who are coming to town instead, which is good for me, at least, as I’m sure I would be crying over the fact that I just missed seeing Jay and Dan live and in person.
Nevertheless, we’re now less than 48 hours until the voting process begins, and I have to say that the mood around everyone involved with the local bid has been pretty exciting.
As Briere said earlier this week, the fact that many people already have known about what’s at stake if the bid is successful, and how they can go about voting for the curling club’s bid, is great to see.
And while the curling club will benefit directly from the $25,000 grand prize if its bid does prevail over Dryden’s, which will go towards its geothermal project, I truly think the whole community really will profit from the whole experience.
Let’s face it, these are uncertain times around this area and things often are tough for many.
And while an event like the “Kraft Celebration Tour” might just be a one-day event, the fact that something exciting like that can come to Fort Frances—and bring a lot of buzz and excitement to the community—can only be a good thing.
Now while I’m confident that everyone in Rainy River District will be voting for the curling club’s bid against the one supporting a new track facility in Dryden, I think the biggest factor in tipping the vote in Fort Frances’ favour will be to get votes from elsewhere.
After all, this is something that people all across Canada will be involved in voting on.
So, tell your friends who aren’t in Fort Frances, your family members that are in your hometown, and tell some kid on the street to get out and vote.
Besides, we don’t want to be beaten at something by Dryden, do we?