Hello Alberta orienteers,
As I write this we are two hours away from the spring equinox. And even though there is still snow on the ground here in Edmonton, the sky is a brilliant blue and temperatures are above zero. So, condolences to the skiers out there, but I hope you will be as enthused as I am to start thinking about the orienteering season ahead.
In planning for the 2023 season your AOA board met in Red Deer in February to determine its priorities and the budget to apply to all the objectives we have as the provincial orienteering association. A couple of key priorities we chose were, one, to increase the ranks of senior orienteering officials – and the course we held in Calgary yesterday for level 300 course planners is one small step in that direction (thanks to Marion Owen for organizing and John Rance for putting on the course!). And another is to help to develop and support new and current mappers in Alberta, as, most of you will know, accurate maps are a cornerstone of our sport. But these are just two of the many things we will be doing–especially by our executive director, Bogi Gyorfi. By the way, if you would like to help set priorities for provincial orienteering, we would welcome any of you who would like to join the AOA board, especially at the upcoming annual general meeting (notice to come out soon).
Speaking of training officials, The Edmonton Overlanders Orienteering Club (EOOC) will be introducing orienteering techniques as well as course planning to newer orienteers in a combined social and learning weekend at the Strathcona Wilderness Centre. Why this emphasis on qualifying new officials? Well, in 2025 EOOC will be putting on the Canadian Orienteering Championships (COCs) and Foothills Orienteering (FWOC) will be organizing the Western Canadian Orienteering Championships (WCOCs), and advanced certified officials are needed for course planning and managing these Canada Cup events. So, in a domino effect, those people who will be spending the hundreds of hours in planning for 2025, leave a gap in the planning of local orienteering events, for which the clubs hope to bring in and qualify new officials.
I don’t want to leave an impression that it is such a lot of work to put on orienteering events...well, it is...but it is work that those of us who have been involved with the sport for a while now, thoroughly and absolutely enjoy. Both in the planning and execution of events, and as participants.
So, here’s a welcome to spring 2023 and the new orienteering season!
Save the date:
Alberta Orienteering Association
7 pm, April 13, 2023
Please register below to receive an email with the Zoom link. The link will be also posted on our website just before the event starts.
All participants at the AOA AGM will be entered to win a door prize!
It's a win-win situation!
Western Canadian Training Camp
Foothills Wanderers Orienteering Club (FWOC) and the AOA are hosting a 3-day spring training camp in Cranbrook using the fantastic maps and great terrain from the 2022 Canadian Championships. Enjoy three days of coached training activities, a B- event and spend some social time with fellow orienteers from across Canada in the group accommodation option.
Date: May 19-22, 2023
Intermediate and advanced adults
Experienced youth 12 years and older are welcome
Accommodation: College of the Rockies, Cranbrook campus
Learning & Social Weekend
Edmonton Overlanders Orienteering Club (EOOC) is inviting everyone who is relatively new to the sport and wants to get more confident with orienteering basics. This is a great opportunity to learn more about our sport, explore new areas, practice advanced navigation techniques, connect to other orienteers, and/or work towards your 100-level certification.
Location: Strathcona Wilderness Centre Lodge.
When: Friday March 24th to Sunday, March 26th, with optional overnight bunkhouse-style accommodation.
Come and stay for the whole weekend camp, or choose which sessions to register for.
NEW OUTREACH program in RED DEER for all ages
We want to provide opportunities for individuals and families to enjoy the outdoors and develop confidence and motivation to be active outside .
All our events are planned for Wednesdays 6:00-7:30 pm, in different locations to discover the city parks with our maps.
These are self-led activities for all ages. You are welcome to bring the whole family but parents must stay with their children.
There will be two courses, one for newbies and kids and one for the experienced.
HOW TO JOIN?
Become an AOA Outreach Member and you can enjoy up to 10 events in 2023. If you sign up for the annual membership, you will receive an email before each event confirming the start location.
Not sure yet? Sign up for one free TRY IT.
RED DEER Community Orienteering Events calendar: Wednesdays 6:00-7:30 pm
1. May 22- Barrett Park
2. May 31- Red Deer Polytechnic
3. June 7 - Bower Ponds
4. June 14- Kin Canyon
5. July date TBD - Heritage Ranch
6. August date TBD- Barrett park
7. September 13 - RDP
8. September 27 - Bower Pond
9. October 4- Kin Canyon
10. October 18 - Heritage Ranch
Try an Orienteering event on (MAY 6/7 TBD) with the EOOC forest event at Morningside JJ Colette Natural area. We will have courses for everyone from beginners to advanced
Planning calendar for Alberta 2023
Did you know that you can see most of the events planned for 2023 on our webpage Events? We also have a planning calendar you can download for your own planning notes.
We are happy to announce that we have received $2500 from the Government of Canada ParticipAction Grant to organize 5 events in 5 communities and invite underrepresented populations to try orienteering. If you have ideas for Crowsnest Pass, Red Deer, Cochrane, Calgary, or Edmonton or know someone who can we contact to invite, please let us know.
Get the KIDS outside or help us spread the word
Youth Programs and TRY IT Opportunities
Check out the Red Deer and Airdrie Outreach Programs and grab a spot. Registration is open and space is limited. We are also hosting Try It events.
in Red Deer and Airdrie .
NEW COMMUNITY PROGRAM IN RED DEER !!
SOGO programs in Calgary and the KRW programs in Edmonton opened registration for the spring.
Mapping and Alberta Park Permit Updates
We are excited to say that the mapping activity is growing in our province. New maps are being planned for the 2025 Canadian Championships and the 4 new outreach maps are in the works.
Thanks to our seasoned mappers Don B, Don R and Geraint who are always busy updating maps and helping some of the new mappers get hooked on making maps.
The club volunteers will never run out of jobs with map updates and finding new areas to map in the cities. Thanks to David, Teresa, Marsha, Stefan, Tim, and Dorothy for supporting this important work.
AB Park permit update:
FWOC is excited to share news that AB Parks, Kananaskis Region, in consultation with FWOC and AOA, has developed an excellent Orienteering Directive that should facilitate getting permits in the Kananskis region! Once our maps have been reviewed by the ecological lead on that AB Kananaskis team (the last step in a multi-year process), we should be able to offer more forest events on some of our favourite maps! Stay tuned! The Directive also makes it easier to create and use new maps! We can't thank Kitty Jones enough for devoting years to spear-heading this effort.
Congrats to our Team Canada Athletes
Orienteering Canada has just selected its Team Canada Program roster for 2023 and we're super proud to have 3 FWOC club members on that list:
Andrew M has been selected to the Junior National Team. Andrew was introduced to the sport through our SOGO Adventuring Running Progam years ago and has been excelling at all levels of competition recently including at the Junior World Championships in Portugal this past summer. Andrew is currently living in Hamilton while studying at McMaster University.
Jan Erik N has been selected to the Senior National Team. Jan Erik first competed at the Junior World Championships level in 2016 and in 2018 achieved a 13th place in the JWOC long distance in Hungary - a best result for Canadian men. Jan Erik lived in Calgary while studying engineering at UofC and ran the SOGO bridge program. Jan Erik is currently living in Chicago.
Robyn A has been selected to the Junior National Team. Robyn has grown up orienteering with the club in an orienteering family. She moved from Calgary to Vancouver this year for university. Robyn participated in her first Junior World Championships this summer in Portugal as the only woman on the team.
Congratulations to Andrew, Jan Erik, and Robyn!
You can find information on the entire team here.