Old St. Vital BIZ marks milestones
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This article was published 27/09/2021 (615 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The past, present and future were celebrated and heralded at a recent event held by the Old St. Vital BIZ.
Last month, the BIZ marked a number of milestones at a special luncheon held at the Riverside Inn on St. Mary’s Road.
The event served as an end-of-season windup for the organization’s summer staff, as well as an opportunity to hand out appreciation awards to longtime BIZ members Jim Fuller and Linda Elmhurst, as well as outgoing executive director Maurice Allard.
Fuller, who has owned Top Hat Florist on St. Mary’s Road since 1966, is the former president of the organization. Elmhurst, who is the former owner of Creative Occasions, which was located near Glenlawn Collegiate, is the organization’s former recording secretary.
Also in attendance at the luncheon were the BIZ’s new president Nancy Cooke and new executive director Regina Teplitsky, as well as board members, staff and government representatives.
In a statement provided to The Lance, Teplitsky said the success of local businesses in the area is a collective effort, as well as a proud one.
“The businesses and community members in Old St. Vital care deeply about the community,” Teplitsky said.
“In 1995, two business owners in Old St Vital, Jim Fuller and Linda Elmhurst worked with other businesses to create the Old St. Vital Business Improvement Zone. Their heart and soul went into this zone. Jim, with his extensive floral knowledge, made sure that the flowers were full and colourful.
“At the same time, with her organizational skills, Linda kept the BIZ on track at many of their meetings. These two put their time and commitment into the Old Vital BIZ for over 25 years. Linda said it best in her acceptance at the luncheon: they wanted people to drive to, and not through, Old St. Vital. Wise words from a member of the Old St. Vital BIZ family. We thank them for their hard work and commitment,” she said.
Organizers also acknowledged the contribution of Allard, who guided the BIZ for five years as executive director.
“When Maurice started in 2016, he walked into an office where he had some rebuilding to do. With persistence, some help, and an intense drive, he moulded the Old St. Vital BIZ into a smooth-running organization,” Teplitsky said.
Allard spearheaded the BIZ’s move from 604 St. Mary’s Rd. to 6-553 St. Mary’s Rd., and also oversaw the implementation of the winter lights beautification project along St. Mary’s Road and St. Anne’s Road, which was a vision of the organization’s board. He was also involved with the administration of a COVID-19 assistance grant to member businesses in the zone last year.
Teplitsky said the organization is also grateful to provincial minister of municipal relations Derek Johnson, who attended the event and “acknowledged the fantastic staff that the provincial green team grant program sponsors.”
Every summer in recent years, a team of high school and university students are hired to help beautify the zone.
“We are proud to report that our summer student team members have been with us for over four years. We wish them all the best as they return to their studies this fall,” Teplitsky said.
Simon Fuller is a reporter/photographer for the Free Press Community Review. Email him at email@example.com or call him at 204-697-7111.