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Blackfalds welcomes Canada Winter Games Torch Relay

posted on Jan 22 2019

Blackfalds, Alberta (January 22, 2019) – Blackfalds is gearing up to welcome the Canada Winter Games as the MNP Canada Games Torch Relay arrives in Town on Tuesday, January 29, now on its final leg prior to the games in Red Deer from February 15 to March 3. We encourage you to join us, with the runners, to celebrate the spirit of the games together.

What:              MNP Canada Games Torch Relay

Where:            Abbey Centre, 4500 Womacks Rd

When:             January 29, 2019

                        Torch Relay – 3:30 pm

                        Ceremony – 4:30 pm

Who:               6 Local runners will carry the Torch through Town

                        MNP and Canada Winter Games Dignitaries

                        Waskasoo, the Games Mascot

For the first time in the Canada Games’ 52 year history, the torch will make its way across Canada stopping in nearly 50 communities along the way. The torch relay embodies the Canada Games’ motto of Unity through Sport as Canadians from coast to coast have engaged in torch relay activities in their communities.

Prior to its run through Alberta, the Torch Relay has visited over 20 communities across the nation. The spirit of the torch relay is being shared with Albertans and Canadians to celebrate the significant accomplishments of the torchbearers who are outstanding leaders in youth, sport and community development.

Blackfalds MNP Canada Games Torchbearers are: Heather Buelow, Byron Hackett, Chris Overacker, Robert Thompson, Rachel Weppler and Richard Poole.

Each torchbearer will run between around 200 m to 1 km and the torch is designed to be able to weigh enough to still be lifted by children and youth.

For the complete MNP Canada Games Torch Relay schedule and information of torchbearers, please visit

For further details visit the Town website at



For more information:

Richard Poole


Town of Blackfalds




Dean Turnquist

Communications Officer

Town of Blackfalds





Torchbearer bios January 29 - Blackfalds


Heather Buelow

Heather Buelow has owned Dancer’s Edge Studio for the past 16 years. With over 500 students enrolled at the studio, she enjoys spreading her love of dance and interacting with all the students. The studio is very community driven and you can quite often find them volunteering or performing at different events. Miss Heather gives back to her community whenever possible and loves what the town of Blackfalds stands for.


Byron Hackett

Byron Hackett moved to Red Deer in 2016 and has been welcomed by the sports community with open arms. As the sports reporter at the Red Deer Advocate, Byron has taken great pride in telling the stories of up-and-coming central Alberta athletes and sharing their accomplishments with as many people as possible.


Chris Overacker

Chris Overacker has been involved in his community, Blackfalds, since moving here 15 years ago. He served on the Minor Hockey board for 8 years, where he was President and Coach/Player development representative. Currently, Chris is the President of minor baseball and started AA baseball in Blackfalds; he has coached both for the past 14 years. He has also been a volunteer badminton and basketball coach.


Robert Thompson

Robert Thompson raises his family, and lives and works in central Alberta. He is involved in his four children’s activities including soccer, pond hockey, pee wee football, skiing, 4H, skating and other interests. At 54, Robert’s life changed. After suffering from a heart attack, he saw that he needed to lead a healthier life, so he began to exercise and eat healthier. Through running, he has inspired others.


Rachel Weppler

Rachel Weppler resides in Blackfalds with her husband and daughter. She is a member of the M’Chigeeng First Nation and is a teacher at Ermineskin Elementary School in Maskwacis. Growing up in a First Nations community, Rachel knew she wanted to work with indigenous youth. Since she began teaching at Ermineskin Elementary school, she has been involved with the sports programs.


Richard Poole

Richard Poole has represented the Town of Blackfalds for over a decade as a Councillor and as Mayor. He continues to volunteer at many Town functions and is committed to encouraging sports and volunteerism within his community. Mayor Poole is proud to know many of the citizens who are offering their assistance in the upcoming Games.