The wait is over and victory is ours. Princeton was officially named Gold Medal Winner of the Gamestown 2010 contest and Mayor McLean is delighted. Confidentiality kept him from talking before the official announcement was made in Kamloops today at 2 p.m. and McLean said, “It was wonderful news to be told that we won, but just awful that I couldn’t share it. I am relieved the secret is out and we can celebrate. I am really proud of the win and of everyone who submitted for Princeton. This is just fantastic news.”
Princeton’s Recreation and Culture Director Lyle Thomas was thrilled. “I feel an overwhelming sense of pride that our community was able to come together and focus on something good like this Gamestown contest. It has been a great experience. I am really happy with Act Now B.C.’s initiative and how their contest has given us a venue to brag about ourselves. Even if we hadn’t won, we are still winners.”
“There has been a snowball effect,” stated Mayor Randy McLean “and it happens a lot here. We start out looking at ways to undertake a project and as the project builds steam we pick up other projects and other people and soon our little project builds into something bigger than even we had the imagination for.”
Recreation Director Lyle Thomas said, “when we first heard about the contest, of course, we wanted to win the money, but then, something greater than the money happened. The entries became a catalyst for community pride.”
Council plan to set up a committee to decide how to allocate the $100,000 cash prize that comes along with the gold medal win. “We want input from within the community and hope that we can turn this $100,000 into $200,00 maybe even more,” said McLean. “Often, when an organization is applying for a grant, they have to have so much money already in place for the project they are wanting to undertake to even qualify to apply for the grant. This $100,000 could become a means for these well intentioned groups to make their projects happen.”
“This win speaks leagues about our community spirit,” added Councillor Frank Armitage. “Princeton is a great community and we’ve got the spirit. This is just a fantastic day for our town.”
“I do it because I can, I can because I want to, I want to because you said I couldn’t.”
This quote has an unknown author, but strikes the chord of many here in Princeton. Many believe it encapsulates Princeton. As a small town, anything that is accomplished is always an uphill battle. Money is often scarce. Luckily, for Princeton, ingenuity is always in full swing. For every person who tells residents something can’t be done, there are fifty who say “want a bet?” Some people did not think a small town could possibly win. Others said one could – many others.
Believing in a community is not blind. It is built on observation. Commitment, will, and ingenuity combined make possibilities, realities. An observer would see all three of these attributes in plentiful supply in Princeton. Belief in Princeton was built watching these three attributes make dream after dream happen.
When Princeton was made aware of the Gamestown 2010 contest, some members of the community jumped on board with whole-hearted belief not only that we could win, but that we deserved it. Something magnificent happened as story submissions were uploaded onto the Princeton site. More people began to believe. Those who believed made Gamestown Gold for Princeton a reality.
Princeton beat out nine other communities to take first place on the Gamestown podium. Dawson Creek was named silver medalist and claimed a $50,000 cash prize and Kamloops was named bronze medalist and claimed $25,000 for their third place win.
“Life isn’t worth living unless you’re willing to take some big chances and go for broke -” Eliot Wiggington.
Princeton believed. Do you believe?