“All I really want is to be a little part of the things that I love.”
Squamish is a lonely town. Anyone who has moved here knows there is generally a two year waiting period to meet anyone. For those who work out of town it could take even longer. Sure if you moved from Vancouver or Whistler every weekend is spent visiting friends in old haunts, or they come up to see your new place. But sure enough, that drive becomes close enough to make the effort but far enough to make excuses. Soon you only see those people for big events.
It is during this changeover that (hopefully) you start meeting people in town.
Now, I’m a social guy, and the idea of a local social has been brewing for a while, more often than not over drinks when talk turns to how it’s tough to meet people in a town that shuts down after six. It’s even tougher since we don’t have Whistler’s vibrant village or Vancouver’s metropolitan amenities. What we do have however is a bloody brilliant bunch of people. The trick is to meet them in a casual setting.
So what is a community to do that has literally seen thousands of newcomers come upon our community in less than two years? Well, we could do what we’ve always done and let them fend for themselves. But that’s not my style. So, with encouragement from Donna McMurtry and my always amazing wife Danielle, I decided to “put up or shut up” and organized Squamish’s first ‘Local Social’. And let me tell you, it was absolutely phenomenal.
I’ve always been a huge fan of this community and more to the point I’ve always been blown away by the downright staggering quality of people who chose to call Squamish home. This local social has only strengthened those feelings.
Moments after the first one started it was obvious this is was one of those “I can’t believe no one has done this before” ideas. The delightful Brackendale Bistro played the inaugural host and as I said it was a great success. There was a fantastic mix of old timers with close to sixty new faces. There were people who moved here two days ago as well as two years ago. Everyone was very happy at the no-pressure setting and the ability to simply meet their neighbors. Funny eh? How something as simple as meeting your neighbors can be so difficult.
Another cool thing is that no one was selling anything. Well ok, that’s not entirely true – I was definitely selling Squamish. If only because I’m a big believer in the more people who consider Squamish more than just a place to rest their head, the better.
One thing is for sure, there will definitely be another one before the summer. June 19th to be exact, and I have no doubt that word of mouth will once again make this grass roots event grow.