GRANDE PRAIRIE NEWS - 2007
January 2007: There are rumors that there have been hundreds of foreclosures in Grande Prairie which have been confirmed as a false rumor. House prices are still regarded as quite high and the rental market is very tight with few rentals available.
January 2007: Ovations Dinner Theatre will be opening in February in the former Triples nightclub location in the Grande Prairie Inn. Also the owners of Subway have recently purchased Taco Time in Grande Prairie.
January 2007: Jenny Craig is opening in Grande Prairie on February 1st, at the Gateway Power Centre on the west side of Grande Prairie. 103, 10915-104A Avenue. (enlarge photo)
January 2007: Grande Prairie is planning another census in the spring. Some anticipate it will show the population to be over 50,000.
February 2007: Peace Farm Power has moved into their new building north on 100 Street at 15102-101 Street, Grande Prairie across from Happy Trails on the north part of the City.
February 2007: It has been confirmed that Grande Prairie will host the 2010 Arctic Games that will attract 2,000 athletes and coaches from areas north of the 55th parallel.
February 2007: The Ken and Teresa Sargent Family Foundation donated one million dollars towards the construction of the 47,000 square foot Grande Prairie Library/Art Gallery.
February 2007: The Grande Prairie & District Chamber of Commerce awarded the Business Citizen of the Year to Menzies Printers (Grant Menzies), The Clem E. Collins award recognized lawyer Lyle Carlstrom. Aron Services won the Dan H. Minchim award.
March 2007: The annual average snowfall for Grande Prairie is 158.6 cm. From October to March in 2007, the snow totaled more than 216 cm. This is the most snow this area has seen for many years.
March 2007: Big news for country fans. Recording artist Willie Nelson is coming to Grande Prairie to do a Concert on June 25th.
March 2007: Centre West Business Park (west of Costco, 116 street , along 100 Avenue) is selling many lots. More hotels will be constructed in this area along with a Furniture Store.
March 2007: Englander Furniture Store located downtown Grande Prairie will be closing its doors. There are rumors that BAMA Furniture will be moving to this location.
March 2007: Arnie, Lila, Troy and Craig Kjemhus of GP Nissan (formerly GP Carland) are saying "Good-Bye" after serving customers for 37 years in Grande Prairie. They have sold their business to Canada One Auto Group which also owns GP Chrysler, GP Subaru and GP Hyundai.
March 2007: Heavy snow takes its toll on one of the oldest buildings in Grande Prairie located at 10209-99 Street. The Prairie Art Gallery received extensive damage when its roof collapsed. At 8:30am, a beam was noticed broken and all the art was moved from that area. The building was evacuated. At 10am, the roof collapsed. The Prairie Art Gallery was built in 1929 and has been allocated a Provincial Heritage Building. Originally it was the Grande Prairie High School. (enlarge photo)
March 2007: A new weekly newspaper called Grande Prairie INK will come out on Saturday mornings starting March 17th. It will be a Free newspaper distributed only in Grande Prairie and will be an extension of the Daily Herald Tribune and the Peace Country SUN.
March 2007: Gord Gauvin has become the General Manager/Sales Manager of Vista Radio, CFRI FM, one of the new radio stations soon to be on air in Grande Prairie.
April 2007: It has been confirmed, Grande Prairie will get its new hospital. $250 million in funding for the project was approved. Surprise to all, the new highway by-pass did not get any Government funding and is still not in the current 3 year plan.
April 2007: Don Gnatiuk has been appointed the new president of the Grande Prairie Regional College. He comes directly from the Vermilion Lakeland College.
April 2007: The official opening of the Trade Exhibition Convention Centre at Evergreen Park will open May 10th, just in time for the Northern Alberta Forestry Show. Evergreen Park is located a few kilometres to the south of Grande Prairie.
April 2007: The radio wars has started with 104.7 Free FM (CFRI) on the air as well as 98.9, Q99 (CIKT). Also competing for almost the same market is the former SUN FM now known as Rock 97.7. Grande Prairie has never had so many choices before.
May 2007: Vistos Bistro closed a few months ago at the corner of 100 street and 101 Avenue, and will soon be opening with new owners and a slightly newer name of Tito's Bistro & Cafe.
May 2007: Housing starts recently released show that Grande Prairie is ahead of the national average with an increase of 8.5 per cent over last year.
May 2007: The Grande Prairie Dream Home is now open located at the north part of Grande Prairie in the new West Lake Village subdivision. 15718-104 street. Only 20,000 tickets will be sold for a chance to win the Dream Home as well as over 630 other prizes. The Draw will be made June 27.
May 2007: Head coach and general manager of the Grande Prairie Storm Hockey Team, Fran Gow, decided to step down from his duties after seven years with the team.
May 2007: More changes downtown. Alberta Computer has moved into the old Common Wealth Credit Union building 9905-100 Avenue.
May 2007: New Head Coach and General Manager of the Grande Prairie Storm is Mike Vandekamp.
May 2007: Boston Pizza opens its 2nd location on the west side of Grande Prairie next to the Brick.
May 2007: Royal Oaks North Subdivision gets approval on the north part of the city. There are plans for 2500 new lots in this subdivision, and eventually 2 schools.
May 2007: By the end of this year, almost 400 km will be twinned from Edmonton to Grande Prairie. 18 km of Highway 43 between Mayerthorpe and Sangudo will be twinned as well as another 20 km between Fox Creek and Valleyview.
June 2007: Grande Prairie will get funding for a new Highway Bypass. It will begin with the completion of the overpass at the four mile corner, then paving a highway west to 116 Street that will join 100 Avenue near Costco.
New Hotel Opens in Grande Prairie
June 2007: The new Podollan Hotel is now open east of the Holiday Inn and East Side Marios, along 100 Avenue near Highway 40. -Dwight Logan will challenge Wayne Ayling for Mayor of Grande Prairie at the next Municipal Election to be held October 15.
June 2007: Canfor mills in Grande Prairie, Chetwynd, and Fort. St. John have shut down for 3 months (June-August) because of continuing poor market conditions.
July 2007: Winner of the QEII Foundation Dream Home, $1.1 million prize this year was a couple from Valleyview, Pauline Gladue-Island and Robert Gladue.
July 2007: Over $350,000 was raised with the Cash and Camping Super Lottery. A 5th Wheel, Riverboat, Holiday Trailers, Ski Boat, Quads and Motor Bikes were just some of the prizes given away. Some of the big winners were J.P. Gagnon of Grande Prairie, Lydon Sawchuck of Fairview, Pat Dodds of Worsley, Gary Fournier of Clairmont, Lola Bennett of Peace River, Rick Campbell of Grande Prairie.
July 2007: A 12-storey building is planned to be constructed at the existing Northern Bottling building along 102 Street north of 100 Avenue that was one of the oldest buildings in Grande Prairie. Rumors have also surfaced that the twin of 214 place will eventually be built on the parking lot just south of 214 Place.