By Anna Smith
The Irvine and District Community Association is among one of the youngest community associations in the area, having just formed in 2023, with one goal: to bring their community back together.
The association was initially formed as part of an organizational response to the construction of the Irvine Community Resource Centre, which was placed in Woodward Memorial Park. This choice of location was a topic of debate and concern, eventually leading to the creation of the association, in order to present a unified voice to the County.
“We were told by people in the know that we needed to develop a community association in order for us to be recognized by the County, if we want to be doing anything, and so we developed this association, and we had about nine people that were kind of central to that,” said secretary Cyndy Lutz.
From there, they quickly developed two major goals: to be able to lend support to residents in need, and to mend the divide that had been caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to bring their community back together as a whole again.
“Everything was shut down for such a long time. And everybody just kind of went their own way. And Irvine used to be a very bustling center for different activities,” said Lutz. “So we decided, since it has just absolutely fallen by the wayside that one of the other goals was going to be for us to bring our community back together.”
The first task they took on was getting involved with 20 Mile Post Days, which was a grand, multi-day celebration this year that blended efforts of many different Irvine clubs and activities, as well as the previous year’s Western Spirit Days, which had been organized largely by Irvine’s own Marina Cole.
“We just want to get bigger and better at it. And provide, as well: everything was free. The antique tractor pulls that we put on this year, they got involved and they’re a group from the Irvine and Dunmore area,” said Lutz. “I mean, what we’re trying to do is just make that weekend a great weekend for lots of people to get involved in different ways.”
They also put on a December dinner and comedy show, which was well attended, and Lutz is pleased to hint that they may be planning to do even more in the coming year.
While the details are far from finalized, Lutz said that the goal is to host about four events each year, to help foster a sense of community and encourage Irvine to get back to interacting with their fellow residents how they did prior to the pandemic.