As this year’s outdoor adventure season heats up, the North Vancouver School District is launching a safety-focused event to keep people out of harm’s way. And everyone’s favourite North Shore Rescue dogs will be in attendance.
On Saturday (May 7), the school district is hosting its first Outdoor Safety and Emergency Preparedness Open House at Ecole Argyle Secondary from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The event is designed to build awareness and resiliency around outdoor safety and emergency preparedness, while giving a platform to local emergency bodies so they can share their expertise with the community.
One part of the event is an outdoor trade show. Parked in Argyle’s parking lot will be North Shore Rescue’s full fleet of vehicles, a ladder truck from North Vancouver City Fire Department, and a boat from Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue. There will also be food trucks on site.
Nearby, Talon helicopters used by NSR will be on the grass field at Lynn Valley Park.
In tandem with the trade show are a number of presentations, including outdoor survival, bear safety and trip planning. The school district has been asking people to register to get a sense of numbers, but community members can also drop in on Saturday.
School district communications manager and event co-chair Lisa Dalla Vecchia said the idea came about after an initial collaboration with NSR for a “survive your own adventure” video released a year ago.
Her team kept thinking about what else it could do for the community.
“One afternoon, I was sitting with former superintendent Mark Pearmain, and he asked me if I had any ideas coming up. And when I suggested this particular event, he said to run with it,” Dalla Vecchia said.
Things snowballed from there. She called NSR, which immediately said yes, as well the school district's director of instruction Adam Baumann, who is co-chairing the open house.
NSR team leader Mike Danks said the event has all you need to ensure your trip, solo or with family and friends, is memorable and safe.
“The warmer weather and longer days bring even greater enthusiasm for exploring the outdoors. When venturing out into the trails or backcountry, preparation is essential,” he said in a statement. “Make it a habit to plan your trip.”
Organizers are encouraging safe transportation to the open house. There will be a free bike valet, as well as parking at Argyle’s upper lot, Lynn Valley Elementary and St. Clement's Anglican Church.
Other event partners include BC AdventureSmart, North Vancouver RCMP Community Police Services and North Shore Black Bear Society.