Sec­ond col­lege Coulee Fest at­tracts a large crowd

Lethbridge Herald - - FRONT PAGE - Greg Bobinec LETHBRIDGE HER­ALD gbobinec@leth­bridge­

Lethbridge Col­lege opened its cam­pus to the com­mu­nity on Satur­day to cel­e­brate the new school year, with the re­turn of Coulee Fest.

The free fam­ily event, in its sec­ond year, was a way for the col­lege to in­vite back and thank the com­mu­nity which has sup­ported it for more than 60 years.

“Our cam­pus has al­ways been here to serve all of south­ern Al­berta as a great place to learn, work and come to­gether,” says Paula Burns, Lethbridge Col­lege pres­i­dent and CEO. “Coulee Fest en­cap­su­lates the best of that com­mu­nity spirit. I hope that ev­ery­one, whether you have life-long ties to the col­lege or are vis­it­ing for the first time, can join us for this in­cred­i­ble day.”

This year’s event fea­tured a lineup of five bands, 13 food trucks, beer gar­dens, a pet­ting zoo, bouncy cas­tles, Ko­di­aks Ath­let­ics mini-games, cam­pus tours, dunk tank, and a What the Junk vin­tage mar­ket with 35 ven­dors.

The fes­ti­val brought out a huge crowd through­out the day to take in the live en­ter­tain­ment, spend time with fam­ily and friends, and to learn more about what the col­lege has to of­fer and the di­rec­tion it is head­ing with its re­cently re­leased new brand “Be Ready.”

“We want to wel­come our stu­dents to cam­pus au­then­ti­cally and it is a way for us to show them our cul­ture,” says Sydney Wakaruk, Alumni Re­la­tions co­or­di­na­tor and Coulee Fest or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee chair. “We wanted to do it big­ger and bet­ter this year, and we want to show peo­ple what we of­fer here at the Lethbridge Col­lege, the di­rec­tion we are headed, as well as the new brand this week and the ways that we are grow­ing, ex­pand­ing and in­no­vat­ing.”

The col­lege spent the last year work­ing out the kinks from the ini­tial fes­ti­val and cre­ated a day full of fun ac­tiv­i­ties and com­mu­nity con­nec­tions. Wakaruk says she is happy the way Coulee Fest turned out this year, and is very proud of the sup­port­ive com­mit­tee that helped it all come to­gether.

“It feels re­ally great, it is re­ally ex­cit­ing to see it all come to­gether,” says Wakaruk. “I have a com­mit­tee of over 20 peo­ple who have stepped up to help me out and I re­ally couldn’t have done it with­out them. It is a cross-cam­pus collaborative ini­tia­tive and that is nice to see that ev­ery­one comes to­gether to make this day hap­pen.”

Coulee Fest put on two fundrais­ers at the event, in­clud­ing a dunk tank which fea­tured cam­pus celebri­ties such as CEO Paula Burns, and a 50/50 draw to help sup­port the Lethbridge Col­lege Stu­dents’ As­so­ci­a­tion Food Bank, the new Bor­row a Text­book ini­tia­tive and stu­dent awards.

Her­ald pho­tos by Greg Bobinec

Kayla Eldridge runs into Kodi the Ko­diak’s arms for a big hug at the Lethbridge Col­lege Coulee Fest, Satur­day af­ter­noon.

David Bowker, Lethbridge Col­lege As­so­ciate Dean Busi­ness, Trades & Ap­pren­tice­ship, takes a cold fall in the dunk tank at the col­lege’s Coulee Fest, Satur­day af­ter­noon.

Her­ald photo by Greg Bobinec

Lottie Biggs gets ex­cited over the farm an­i­mals in the pet­ting zoo, at the Lethbridge Col­lege Coulee Fest, Satur­day.

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