It’s been one year since East Kootenay Community Credit Union (EKCCU) opened their Sparwood branch and they celebrated with the community Wednesday night.
The sun was shining as the festivities got started, featuring a barbeque, refreshments, and entertainment from DJ McRae. PT the Clown kept the kids happy with balloon animals and face painting, while adults took cover from the wind in a heated tent.
EKCCU CEO Jody Burk held the crowd’s attention as he thanked staff members, Board Director Barb Nunes, and Branch Manager Eric Johnstone for a successful first year.
“Eric’s leadership of the branch here has been great, as well as his leadership of community events that we do here.”
Burk went on to emphasize how grateful EKCCU is for Sparwood residents that had been credit union members long before the local branch opened.
“We wouldn’t have this branch here today if it wasn’t for those members because they drove up to Elkford when they could have just gone down the street to do their banking, or they drove to Fernie. We’d really like to thank those members that did that for many, many years.”
He added, “What you see over the last year is just a little bit of what’s to come. The credit union, we believe, is an integral part of the community and we look forward to the many, many years ahead of us.”
Sparwood Search and Rescue donated their time to run the barbeque for donations, with EKCCU promising to match the money raised. Branch Manager Eric Johnstone was happy to present Search and Rescue with a cheque for $750.
The real party got started following the speeches. EKCCU mascots Fat Cat and Moneybags created a dance floor and got everyone moving, including Sparwood Mayor Lois Halko, with the hokey pokey and the chicken dance.