An Olympic Effort

Jeff Wilmore

An Olympic Effort

I very much enjoyed the little I saw of the London Summer Olympics this past season. One event I always make room for is the marathons, both men and women’s. That kind of tenacity and endurance I find very inspiring. The physical and physic strength that is required to run for over two hours at that level is unimaginable. Every stride, every movement takes concentration and unnecessary actions, even thoughts, can be draining. A great example of this is when the runners look over their shoulder to check on their competitors. You can tell it is an effort for them, one that throws them somewhat, and for this reason they don’t do it very often, usually once the end is in sight.

What we do in the maintenance department is certainly, on an individual basis, a lot easier than that stuff. However, the high season around here is a marathon of sorts for all the staff here at the Village. At this time of year we can see the end is in sight and we feel we can now expend the energy needed to look over our shoulders.

When I look back this early Fall, I see a lot of accomplishment, and most of it due to the very good people that work with me in our ragged little department. Under the shabby armature of my management, this staff has once again worked miracles in not only keeping the site operating well, but making many improvements both big and small. Mike Anderson, our seasonal Buildings Manager, is pivotal in ensuring all these things happen. As my job focuses more on the office work required to keep the department going, Mike does the on-site leg work to make sure the directed work is getting accomplished.

Mike has always been extremely skilled and dedicated to this site, but this year, to keep the sports metaphors flowing, he has really stepped up to the plate. While I have been distracted by Capital projects and shiny things, under his even and measured leadership at least four major projects have been accomplished and the site has never looked better or ran smoother. Mike provides this department with an on-site stewardship that has been indispensable this season. He continues to keep pace with all the demands of the site, while maintaining great humor, good judgment and excellent relationships with all staff and volunteers.

At this point, dear reader, I will turn my head back around before I run into something and again look forward. We still face a very busy autumn with new construction of the Spriet Family Visitor Centre, and we have a Pioneer Village to run. The kind of tenacity and endurance provided by great staffing will make it all possible.

Jeff Willmore
Buildings Manager