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A new vision and slogan for Edmonton needs applause – June 15 UPTAIT: 6:15 a.m.

Cam Tait is a best-selling author and award winning journalist determined to honour the dignity and nobility of journalism ON DISABILITIES ... when it mattered and how we need it today



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My Edmonton Sun June  15 column with a suggestion for a new slogan


From last week..

My friend

A song from 1978 as been playing in my head, cueing up Tuesday afternoon when official word trickled out of Edmonton City Council the City of Champions signs were not going back up on Edmonton’s outskirts.
I respect and honour the citizens we have, and their unselfish acts of helping, donating, volunteering and so many more gestures — so very kind gestures — that uplift our community to thrive.
Yet, I have never been in favour of bringing the City of Champions signs back.
For me, personally, it has changed my way of thinking.
I’ve been accused by family and friends of living in the past. Many times I’ve re-hashed the same story, over and over again, of a wonderful time in my life. “We’ve heard that 800 times before,” my wife would pipe up. “Quit living in the past.”
I did that because I wanted to re-live that moment … to, somehow, try get it.
About a year ago, a fellow Christian friend of mine — who knows my tendency to re-cycle old stories — suggested a great passage from scripture.

This city, this community, will always have champions in it.
The phrase City of Champions was coined in the 1980’s when Edmontonians were treated to unprecedented championships from our professional sports teams, Oilers, Eskimos, Trappers. Moreover, countless other amateur teams celebrated championships.
Then, the unthinkable happened: May 31, 1987. The tornado that ripped through Edmonton, causing deaths and damage. Edmontonians, true to tradition, came together like never before.
To comfort.
To support.
To love.
That profound chapter of our city’s history will be forever underscored, reminding us of what ilk of people call Edmonton home.
I am not, in any way, disrespecting that. Nor am I saying it isn’t important.
It is.
But time does march on. A great newspaper man once told me: “The key in this business is to keep re-inventing yourself.” Such a statement doesn’t just apply to professional ploys, but, alas, personal potential.
With city council’s 7-5 vote to keep the signs down is a crystal clear indication they endorse the notion of Edmonton coming up with a new slogan to embrace new times, new trends, new achievements and — do I dare suggest? — new champions.
Clinging to past times of happiness, joy and celebrations is human nature. We wish the good times in our lives would, somehow, magically last forever, and all the rough waters would never start to flow.
Life doesn’t roll that way. It changes.
So do cities … and their need to promote their new persona.

And that song from ’78?


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