City contest seeks young mayor to take over

Local youth encouraged to write an essay on what they would do if they were the mayor of the City of Parksville

Liam Richardson

Liam Richardson

Parksville is running its Mayor for a Day essay contest again after last year’s success.

Parksvillians in Grades 5 through 12 are invited to have their say in an essay of 500 words or less on what they would do if they were the mayor and how they would make Parksville the best city on the Island.

The winner will spend a day as honourary mayor, meet with city leaders, tour facilities like the renovated fire hall, work alongside mayor Chris Burger and attend the May 7 council meeting.

Ballenas Secondary Grade 10 student Liam Richardson won last year and reveled in his roll as honorary mayor.

“I love Canadian politics because it makes me very proud to say I live in a free democracy — a democracy in which all people regardless of race, politics or religion can be accepted as a Canadian,” the 15-year-old read from his winning essay during a council meeting last year.

“I was really impressed, it shows young people can be active in politics,” Burger said of Richardson, pointing out the students kept bringing up issues that council themselves often debate.

“We hope that this contest will encourage students to learn about Parksville and their local government,” he said.

The initiative recognizes both Local Government Awareness Week (May 20-26) and Youth Week BC (May 1-7), a provincial celebration of youth and a chance for the city to acknowledge the contributions made by young people, explained communications officer Debbie Tardiff. The winning essay will be chosen by council, become the property of the city and published on its website.

Due April 20, it is open to residents or students attending school in Parksville. Essays should be single spaced with 12 point font. Handwritten essays should be on ruled paper. Include your name, age, grade, address and phone number.

Submit by e-mail at communications@parksville.ca, in person at 100 Jensen Avenue East or mail to City of Parksville, P.O. Box 1390, Parksville V9P 2H3.

For more, call 250-954-3073.