Lavictoire takes helm of Crysler Citizens’ Committee

Members of the Crysler Citizens' Committee gather at the group's recent meeting that inaugurated André Lavictoire as new president. Courtesy photo

Trail maintenance and bridge project a focus moving forward

CRYSLER — Fresh off the success of last month’s fun run and official trail launch, the Crysler Citizens’ Committee has enshrined a new president. For the two-year term ahead, André Lavictoire will helm the organization, backed up by his wife, Elaine, as treasurer. Isabelle Masson will serve as secretary, and Rachelle Labelle as director.

Crylser Citizens’ Committee President André Lavictoire. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

Last December, the Committee completed the existing nature trail along the old New York and Ottawa Railroad path through the town — at least, as far as the land section is concerned. As their next objective, they want to construct a bridge across the South Nation River to join the two current sections.

Outgoing president Mike Lapp reported to the recent General Meeting of the committee that the entire former New York Central Railroad roadbed, formerly owned by Bell Aliant, has now been transferred to the township of North Stormont. “Cutting as it does through cultivated farmland, the trail provides an avenue of open nature for the people of the village to experience,” Lapp proclaimed. “That makes it a true town asset.”

With the trail construction finished except for the bridge, efforts will now be concentrated on maintenance and beautification, which remain on-going tasks.

The Citizens’ committee is also looking to extend community group collaboration, not just on the trail, but on other town issues. Secretary Bianca Zinatelli reported that almost every business in town had helped facilitate trail construction, along with some outside the town, like the Caisse Populaire Desjardins in Embrun and the Bank of Nova Scotia in Chesterville; the township had also helped. In addition, Zinatelli noted how townspeople had contributed by purchasing banners of welcome, which have not only helped pay for trail development but brightened up Crysler. Banners can still be purchased from André Lavictoire; you can contact him at 987-5697.

Along this line, the Citizens’ Committee has been taking on projects with a dual purpose — raising funds and building community spirit. This led them to organize a community dinner, and to stage a ‘fun run’ at the beginning of May.

This last project was undertaken in partnership with the Centre de santé communautaire de l’Estrie. The clinic has as part of its mandate the promotion of wellness programs, so a fitness activity is a natural fit. As Crysler CSC liaison Juliette Labossière explained, “The trail provides opportunities for the entire family and every generation to get outdoors for a walk or a bike ride — great for the town’s overall health. The fun run was another example of fitness and fun in action.” She also observed that the Citizens’ Committee community dinner now featured more nutrition choices, enhancing the nutrition element of wellness.

Looking ahead, the committee wants to ensure provisions for trail maintenance. They also want to strengthen links with other town volunteer groups, and join in other projects of community improvement. As far as the construction of the bridge is concerned, the group has now set money aside for the project, and will be pursuing grants for additional funding.


The Bell Aliant trail, during the recent Fun Run and trail’s 2017 launch, last month. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News


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