A Night Out at Spruce Meadows

By Capt Brandon Frizzell


On Friday, 26 September 2014, the Strathcona Mounted Troop was honoured to be invited back to Spruce Meadows as guests for the 2014 Service Award Dinner held in Congress Hall.  The Service Award Dinner is held privately for all employees of Spruce Meadows and their spouses, and allows a chance for long term service and extraordinary dedication to be recognised.

The Troop departed CFB Edmonton around noon the day of the event on a chartered bus sent by Spruce Meadows, which took everyone directly to their own hotel room down in Calgary.  It was certainly a more luxurious bus than those used between CFB Edmonton and CFB Wainwright.  After a few hours in the hotel, everyone piled back on the bus for the short trip over to Congress Hall for the much anticipated dinner.  Everyone was quite relieved and not quite sure what to do with themselves after arriving at Congress Hall and going inside, not simply standing in uniform at the door.  Once inside, the Troop was greeted by trays of wine and appetizers in addition to great company.  It was an outstanding opportunity for all members of the Troop to catch up with and get better acquainted with all of the Spruce Meadows employees we have worked so closely with throughout all of the tournaments this summer.

In true Spruce Meadows fashion, the dinner served that night was truly outstanding.  Cpl Max “I used to think I was a good cook” Lachance-Webster, was utterly amazed that his knife was not required at all throughout the course of the dinner.  Following dessert, the guests continued to mingle as the service awards were presented.  Dedicated Spruce Meadows employees were called forward and recognised for 5, 10, 35 and 40 years of outstanding service.  Following these awards, a very special thank you was made to the Strathcona Mounted Troop for all of our efforts throughout the 2014 season and especially for the hard work and dedication in the aftermath of the snow storm which crippled the first day of the Masters Tournament.  It was truly an honour for the Troop to be recognised in such a generous way among all of the valued Spruce Meadows team members.

Rounding out the evening was a special performance by none other than Mr. Paul Brandt who entertained the guests with an intimate 45 minute session.  Guests and members of the Troop continued to socialise well into the early hours of the morning finally retiring to the hotel before heading back to Edmonton on Saturday.  The evening proved to be an absolutely wonderful experience for the members of the Troop and their spouses.  On behalf of the Regiment and the Strathcona Mounted Troop, we would like to extend our best wishes and a very heartfelt thank you to the entire Spruce Meadows team for an outstanding season and for including us in your 2014 Service Award Dinner.