New rec director gets warm welcome

Eric McCarthy
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O’LEARY -- O’Leary’s Town Council provided a hearty welcome to the town’s new recreation director as Jeff Ellsworth introduced himself to councillors during their monthly meeting on Thursday.
Councillor Darren MacKinnon told Ellsworth he has heard lots of positive comments about the town’s selection since he was confirmed as the new rec director. “I think you will be very successful and I wish you all the best,” he said. “It’s an exciting opportunity,” he said.

Ellsworth admitted he’s getting lots of positive feedback in the community and already has about 10 people interested in serving on a recreation advisory committee. “There’s lots of buzz, for sure,” he said.

During his introduction, Ellsworth, who is only working part time until he completes his contract with Holland College, said he has started looking into attracting major tournaments to the town. He noted Softball Canada tournaments have already been awarded for 2014, but he is confident O’Leary can attract the Under 21 National Women’s championship next year. In the meantime, he is working on attracting the Under 12 Boys Atlantic Championship and Eastern Canadian Men’s Orthodox championship for this year. Although neither is confirmed, councillors expressed satisfaction with the initial effort.

Grand Prix wrestling in May and a spring ball hockey league are expected to be offered again this year.

He reported early interest being expressed in ball and soccer programs.

Council advised him of the O’Leary Region Business Association wanting him to work with them in advancing plans and he noted it was something he did regularly when he was recreation director in Alberton.

“I’m all about setting goals You can achieve dream goals in a matter of two or three years It’s all about setting goals and setting smaller ones to get to the big goals. I see no difference here: Plan for five years down the road and how are you going to get there. That’s where you guys will come in to play. You guys will be presented with strategies and strategic plans. I’ll just float them your way and if you approve them, we’re good to go.”

Council plans to hold an evening event to introduce Ellsworth to the community and seek ideas for activities he might be able to advance forward.

Organizations: Holland College, Under 21 National Women, O’Leary Region Business Association

Geographic location: Alberton

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