Thank you to those who have taken the time to share concerns regarding Saturday, December 5. We had already reached out to Environmental Public Health (through the Alberta Government) The City of Airdrie, and Community Development for assistance in making this event safer, and have been working since to PIVOT again. We did have EPH’s approval to run, but between the nice weather, people coming out from Calgary and this being our opening weekend, it was the perfect storm for crowds to become too large. Sunday, December 6, we had a representative from AHS onsite, as we were open to review the changes made Sunday, and too help identify any other measures, so we can continue running. We do have the support of AHS to proceed, but one again, we are really asking for the public’s assistance in meeting the requirements.
Here’s what we’re doing at AFOLS;
- Added additional signage, encouraging one-way traffic flow
- Increasing our number of volunteers each evening to keep pathways flowing, and remind guests about distancing.
- Produced pre-recorded messages to be played over our speakers reminding people to keep their distance, wear their masks, and other COVID health measures.
- Roped off the picnic shelter to reduce congregating points.
- Placed thousands of painted arrows on the pathways at 6′ intervals to help remind people of the minimum distance they need to keep.
- In conjunction with the City of Airdrie, have closed the skating pond, as this was the highest congregating pinch point we encountered.
- We will be closing the parking lot, and walking path entrances when the park reaches capacity, and asking guests to return in 20 minutes, or another night. Our priority for re-opening entrances will be through the main gate first, when this occurs.
- We have added extra radios, to enhance immediate communications as we monitor numbers in the park.
- We have added additional people counters to all entrances, and our exit, to monitor attendance.
- We have identified pinch points more effectively, and have installed extra barriers and volunteers in these locations, and/or passthrough’s to alleviate congestion, and keep traffic flowing.
Here’s what you can do to help us and the Community;
- PLEASE WEAR YOUR MASKS! You will be asked at the entrances if you have one with you, and would you mind wearing it. If you’d like one, but didn’t bring one, we have some available. It no longer matters if you like them or not, this is bigger than all of us, and our feelings. For the 20 minutes… if that’s what it takes to continue offering Lights, then please, let’s do it! We are #inthistogether
- If you are unwell, please come another day, when you are better.
- Keep your distance from others. 2M is the recommended, but in outdoor activities such as this, consider widening the gap even more.
- Practice good hand hygiene, keep your hands to yourself as much as possible. Limit touching your face, especially the eye and mouth area.
- Keep your group sizes small, and even though you are allowed to gather outside in groups of 10, remember that you still must keep 6′ distancing from those not in the same household.
St Paul’s Catholic Church parking is NOT available to visitors of AFOLS, and we will be monitoring the walking entrance and limiting entry. Actually, we are monitoring all entrances, but we will now be limiting entry, and encouraging entrance through our Main Gate Only. Priority for entry will be given to the Main Gate over any others.
- If it is looking busy, pick a different day. Or perhaps take a drive around Airdrie, using our “Let’s GET LIT Airdrie” map and see some of the decorated homes Airdrie is offering, and then try us again in an hour.
- With no other activities, the walk itself is approx. 20 minutes, meaning it can be done any day of the week, not just on weekends. If it’s crowded, please try later in the evening, or another day. Weekdays are much less busy.
The City of Airdrie has committed to providing more Enforcement officers to assist in ensuring Covid protocols are followed.