Submitted by R. Dale Roth
It has been 33 years since I last called Bow Island home. Much like many young people raised in a rural community, I couldn’t wait to escape the perceived limitations living in a small town placed upon the future and in the summer of “83” I set off to chase dreams and experience what this big old world had to offer.
I returned this fall after accepting an employment opportunity in the area; and over these past few months, have experienced a multitude of emotions getting re-acquainted with my new surroundings.
I suppose shock, and a bit of sadness first gripped my attention at the virtual extinction of small family farms, including our own, which once formed the foundation of the community; as well as the number of vacant storefronts along the bean capital’s main street. I’ve come to have a great deal of respect for the handful of businesses I remember from my youth that have endured and of which I couldn’t imagine Bow Island being without.
I also can’t help but admire those community members who strive each day to provide recreational and entertainment activities in what has become an extremely diverse community with very limited resources and funding.
Pleasantly surprising is the amount of renewal, development, and growth the town has and continues to experience. A new school and extensive renovations to the others seem to exude inspiration, potential, and unlimited possibilities for our future leaders being groomed within.
I find myself in awe of the excellent care and condition of Centennial Park campground and Bow Island golf course; both offering monumental improvements from the slimy slew and sand greens I grew up with.
A huge smile adorns my face each time I step foot through the doors of the Susan Andersen Library with its abundance of opportunity to escape, explore, and enrich the hearts and minds of young and old alike.
The increasing bustle of agricultural and construction industries in the area is optimistically encouraging that Bow Island will continue to survive and thrive for many years to come.
My path in life has taken me through many cities and towns, each with their own quirks and quarks which make them special and unique.
I feel truly blessed to have been given the chance to rediscover my hometown and have gained a renewed sense of pride in once again calling Bow Island my home.