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Category: Coldwell News

2018 South Center Pancake Breakfast

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July 19 marked the third annual South Center Pancake Breakfast. Every year during Westerner Days in Red Deer Coldwell Banker OnTrack Realty along with the other businesses in the South Center Business Park hold a charity pancake breakfast. This year we chose the NICU and Pediatric Units at Red Deer Regional Hospital to receive all the donations made, which was a total of $754! We were joined in our efforts by Brent LaBrosse with Alberta Health Services, Canadian Blood Services, Lockdown Red Deer, Advance Mortgage, Curves, Subway, ABC Country Restaurant, Fluid Vape, Elite Chiropractic, and Color Me Mine. Thank you to all that participated and all that attended!

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Blue Gives Bottles & Clothing

One Community. One Goal.

Together with our Agents, The Gift of Blue Gives Back can make a real difference in the lives of those less fortunate in our community.

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What a privilege it was to drop off a bunch of clothes to Home of Hope on behalf of Coldwell Banker Ontrack Realty Always feels great to donate to a good cause. If you are ever looking for a great charity to donate to check out home of hope at www.homeofhope.ca

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Coldwell Banker OnTarck Realty was happy to donate to Dreams Take Flight. Its a national volunteer charitable organization dedicated to providing the trip of a lifetime to medically, mentally, physically, socially or emotionally challenged children. With the aid of Air Canada, other national and local organizations and businesses, money is raised to make the dream a reality in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax. Funds not required for its primary purpose can be gifted by Dreams Take Flight to other registered charities that benefit physically, mentally or socially challenged children and are within the policies adopted by Dreams Take Flight Canada.   Thank you Mary for organizing the bottle drive and delivering them ! #bluegivesback #dreamstakeflight

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Blue Gives Blood

What greater gift is there than the gift of life?

That’s exactly what every blood donation delivers. Blood and blood products are a critical part of everyday medical care including major surgeries, medical procedures, cancer treatments and managing disease.

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HEART SURGERY

Born with a congenital heart disease, Some  patents need more than 40 blood transfusions as a baby, as well as daily platelet and plasma transfusions.

LEUKEMIA

Diagnosed with leukemia, you may need to received numerous blood transfusions while you waited for a suitable stem cell donor to be found.

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CAR CRASH

If you were in a serious car accident that left you clinging to life.  You could be in need of several transfusions to save your life. If not for the generosity of blood donors, you would not be here right now.

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The Facts About Whole Blood

 

What’s Your Blood Type?

Your blood type determines who you can donate to, or receive blood from. People with type O negative (O-) are considered universal donors, as they can donate red blood cells to all other blood type recipients. That’s why it’s always in high demand — it’s used in emergency situations when there is no time to test a patient’s blood type.

People with type AB positive (AB+) are considered universal recipients for red blood cells as they can receive them from any other blood type donor.

The most common blood type in Canada is O positive (O+), about 39 per cent of the population has it, which is why we have the greatest need for type O blood.

The least common type is AB negative (AB-), the blood type of less than one per cent of the population.

Who Can You Give Blood To?

 

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National Inventory 16 Week Trend

See how much blood is on the shelves ready for action. You can help build the inventory for patients by booking today!

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Donating Blood

When donating blood, the standard donation is approximately 450 mL, slightly less than half a litre or two cups. This represents a small portion of the blood in a person’s body, as the average adult has about 5 litres.

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How to Use Hashtags: How Many, Best Ones, and Where to Use Them

I have found my self trying to explain Hashtags a lot lately ….. And to be honest most of you all think its the telephone button.

Internet language has evolved considerably over the past few years as social media has taken off. Hashtags are a huge part of this evolution. What once was a telephone button is now a social media phenomenon. No wonder people are confused.

When I’m asked, I tell them that hashtags are a pound sign immediately followed by a keyword. They’re used for categorization on social media. Yes, they can be annoying if overused. And yes, I’ve seen the hashtag video of Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake. So funny by the way!! I’ll just leave this link here… https://www.youtube.com/watch

Hashtags also have the potential to be truly valuable. The stats and info below make a pretty clear case that we should be understanding, using, and appreciating hashtags.

So go get a coffee… and get comfy, your in for a good read!

Research says you should be using hashtags

If you’re looking for a completely cut-and-dry ruling on the topic of hashtags, then here it is:

You should be using hashtags!

The potential of hashtags is truly incredible. What began on Twitter has now spread to Facebook, Google+, Instagram, Google search, and almost everywhere in between. (LinkedIn experimented with hashtags for awhile before giving up.)

The widespread acceptance of hashtags should give you plenty of reason to consider using them.

As ridiculous as hashtags might seem to marketing veterans who remember a time before Twitter and Facebook, the younger generation and potential customers/clients don’t. To them, using hashtags is as natural and common as typing their query into the search box.

Not only could people be typing in your hashtag on a Google search, but they could very well be doing it in Twitter, too. In this sense, a hashtag will make your content viewable by anyone with an interest in your hashtag, regardless of whether they’re part of your clan or not.

A hashtag immediately expands the reach of your tweet beyond just those who follow you, to reach anyone interested in that hashtag phrase or keyword.

But how to use hashtags is a different story completely. How do you find the best ones for your content and make sure you’ve got them in the right number, on the right social network? Let’s break it down.

Hashtags on Twitter

Tweets with hashtags get two times more engagement than tweets without.
Doubling your online engagement is a big deal! Imagine going from four retweets to eight or 10 retweets to 20. And all it takes is a simple # or two?
Apparently so. Although, you’ll want to keep it to no more than two.
When you use more than three hashtags, your engagement actually drops by an average of 17 percent.

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Twitter’s own research into hashtags confirms that there is significant advantage to using them. Individuals can see a 100 percent increase in engagement by using hashtags. Engagement, as measured in these studies, can include clicks, retweets, favorites, and replies, yet if it’s only retweets your after, hashtags still would be a smart bet.

Tweets with one or more hashtag are 55 percent more likely to be retweeted.

Hashtags on Instagram

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Instagram is another hotspot for hashtags, and the good news for those who love to extensively tag photos is that there doesn’t seem to be a saturation point.

Interactions are highest on Instagram posts with 11+ hashtags.

A rule of thumb could be: Don’t sweat your amount of Instagram hashtags.
The best part about this recommendation is that the data comes from a set of users with 1,000 or fewer followers—a group that likely includes small businesses and those just diving in to Instagram. In other words, hashtags could be your best bet for growing a fast following on Instagram. So get at it !

Hashtags on Google+

On Google+, your posts are given hashtags automatically based on their content, but you can also edit them or add your own. Also unique about Google+: You can add hashtags in your comments as well as your post – double the opportunities to be found.
And since Google+ is Google’s social network, hashtags are now built right into Google searches. If you type in a hashtag search, you’ll get the normal search results plus a sidebar of relevant Google+ posts. Hashtags have truly arrived!

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Google+’s “related hashtags” also offer smart marketers a brainstorming opportunity to discover new content ideas and gauge interest level in specific topics.

Takeaways

Hopefully you’ve learned the value of hashtags here and a few neat ideas on how to find some to use in your social sharing. If you’re looking for a simple rule of thumb for hashtagging posts, I think there’s a lot of truth here.

Rule of thumb: 1 – 3 tags is best over all platforms.

#openhouse #coldwellbanker #coldwellbankerontrack #centralalberta #albertarealestate #centralalbertarealestate #realtor

  • Twitter: to categorize

  • Pinterest: to brand, and be specific (tags are only clickable in pin descriptions)

  • Instagram: to build community, and be unique/detailed

  • Google+: to categorize; auto-generates tags based on what it thinks your post is most relevant to

  • Facebook: sort of a hashtag fail – if your audience is very business-minded, follow Twitter rules; if it is community-oriented, follow Pinterest/Instagram rules

What hashtags do you routinely use on social edia? I’d love to hear how you’ve put hashtags to work in your social media strategy.

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5 Reasons to House-Hunt This Winter

Move over, summer real estate market: An increasing number of Canadians, including first-time homebuyers, are turning to winter house hunting. Here are five reasons why the off-season may be the most magical time of the year…to buy your first home!

1. There’s less competition

Between travel, holiday planning, end-of-year demands at work and a natural urge to cocoon at home, people are less likely to launch a house hunt in December.

This means you’re less likely to fall into a bidding war or to have competitors vying for “your” dream home. Wait too long, and your offer won’t be the only one a seller has to consider.

2. Sellers are motivated

For the same reasons that people are less likely to go house hunting in winter, homeowners are less likely to list in winter. Who wants to complicate their holidays, right? Motivated sellers do.

Winter sellers are either trying to sell a house or condo that didn’t move during the peak real estate season or they’re eager to sell their home fast – so fast that they don’t want to wait till the new year. They are more apt to negotiate the price, as well as conditions like closing costs, dates and sales terms (such as what appliances are included in the sale).

3. You’ll get VIP treatment from your REALTOR®

Although a great REALTOR® will work hard to make you feel like you’re his or her only client any time of year, the reality is that you’ll be leaving a lot more voice mails come April. Fewer clients during the December real estate lull means your REALTOR® has more time – and motivation – to focus on your home hunt.

4. All systems are go

Baby, it’s cold outside. And that provides you with a unique opportunity to check out how a home copes with winter weather. Is the basement dry? Is the furnace going strong? Are the windows draft-proof? What about the doors? Wow, how cozy is that electric fireplace?!

Seeing how the property functions under difficult winter conditions is a valuable insight that you can only get at this time of year.

5. The spring real estate market isn’t that far away

Spring is when the real estate market hits its stride, with the highest number of house hunters battling it out, often in bidding war scenarios. You’re likely to pay more for your home if you buy during peak season. So, it’s smart to get a jump on the spring market, which, according to some real estate professionals, begins in…February!

Get started house hunting now and, odds are, if you don’t close on your first home by mid-winter, you’ll hit the ground running for spring

.

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Staging Tips for Selling During the Holidays

Before you deck the halls, see which holiday decor can help you sell.

It’s the time of year that calendars are packed with holiday parties, budgets are strained by gift-giving and the roads are covered in freshly fallen snow. Alas, ’tis not the season for real estate. But the good news is that the few brave house-hunters who do venture out are serious about buying a house and stylish trimmings will make them want to ring in the new year in your home.

“Holidays can be personal on a lot of levels, but you want to make sure your decor is neutral,” advises Amy Powers, owner of Accent Home Staging & Interiors of Atlanta. “You want to romance your buyer, not invite them to your Christmas party.”
Try these tips to get buyers in the right spirit:
  • Clean and stage. “Before you decorate, your house needs to be staged,” Powers says. If your living room is already piled high with clutter and tchotchkes, your ceramic reindeer collection is only going to add to the sense of overcrowding.
  • Create a cozy vibe. The less-is-more mantra of home staging may tempt you to forgo holiday cheer this year. But a few subtle touches like a bowl of pinecones, an evergreen wreath, or a pot of cider simmering on the stove can create a warm and festive feeling in your home.
  • Complement your palette. Before you start untangling your tinsel, make sure your holiday collection matches your current decor. If your living room is painted a soothing ocean-blue hue, skip the clashing red garland and opt for white snowflakes or a silver glass-ball wreath. If you’ve got an earthy color scheme, accent with rich tones like cranberries, forest greens and gold.
  • Accentuate the positive. Too many trimmings may distract buyers, but the right accessories can draw attention to your home’s best features. Dangle mistletoe in an arched doorway, or display your menorah on the ledge of a bay window; just don’t block a beautiful view with stick-on snowflake decals or clutter an elegant fireplace with personalized stockings.
  • Go light on lights. Step away from the inflatable snowman, Clark Griswold. One man’s “merry” is another man’s “tacky,” so tone down any garish light displays while your home is on the market. (No, your neighbors didn’t pay us to say that.) Instead, use simple string lighting to play up your home’s architecture or draw attention to the gorgeous fir tree in your front yard.
  • Be an equal-opportunity decorator. Leave the life-sized Nativity scene in storage this year, because overtly religious flourishes may be off-putting to some buyers. “You want to keep neutrality throughout, so you can attract any type of buyer,” Powers says. Not sure what qualifies? Powers adds, “No matter what your religion is, you’re not going to feel offended by a nutcracker.”
  • Mind the tree. A tall Christmas tree can help you show off your two-story great room, but make sure the wide base won’t overwhelm the floor space. If your living area is on the small side, save space with a skinny tree. Swap the gaudy heirloom ornaments and trim your tree in a cohesive theme such as icicle lights and silver tinsel, for example, or blue and gold glass balls.
  • Clear the clutter. A few decorations can stir the holiday spirit, but don’t feel obliged to hang every last ornament. “A lot of people, when they decorate, tend to use all the extra space in their house,” Powers says. “You still want each space to look as spacious as possible.” Limit yourself to a few hints of holiday flair, but stash the rest in the basement for now. If you start to miss your Santa figurines, just remember that with a little luck, you’ll be celebrating next year’s holidays in a new home. And you can decorate that place any way you please.
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Coldwell Banker History Video

The History of Coldwell Banker Canada

The Coldwell Banker brand is the oldest and most established residential real estate franchise system in North America. Founded in 1906, young entrepreneur Colbert Coldwell, later joined by partner Benjamin Banker, changed the way that people bought and sold homes. More than 100 years later, the Coldwell Banker network is one of the most trusted in the world, with a global presence across 48 countries and territories worldwide.

The Coldwell Banker name first came to Canada in 1989, in the brand’s first international expansion. Coldwell Banker became a major force in the Canadian marketplace by entering into a joint venture with Canada Trust Realty in 1992, gaining a legacy of over 70 years’ experience serving the real estate needs of Canadians from coast to coast.

In 1996, Coldwell Banker Canada pioneered Ultimate Service®, a unique customer satisfaction program and business philosophy that has earned a 98% overall satisfaction rating from more than 70,000 Canadian Home Buyers and Sellers.

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All Aboard The Express

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The canoe’s role in the making of Canada is as deep as any river or lake that runs through this vast country.

Adventurous fur traders and explorers like David Thompson and Alexander Mackenzie travelled westward by canoe toward the Pacific Ocean along challenging waterways, meeting and trading with indigenous peoples. The result was they opened up what was once known as Rupert’s Land, which the Hudson’s Bay Company claimed.

So it was only fitting that Canada’s 1967 centennial celebrations included a history-making 5,250-km voyageur canoe race that ran from Rocky Mountain House all the way to Montreal.

Now 50 years later there will be another race — this time with paddlers travelling 1,600 km along rivers in Western Canada — to mark Canada’s next big confederation birthday, it’s 150th in 2017.

Vic Maxwell, 80, one of the original paddlers in 1967, is now involved with a Rocky Mountain House committee organizing the Rupertsland Express — Heritage Canoe Race. Before the big race, there will be a less competitive 120-km, five-day trip down the North Saskatchewan River from the Kootenay Plains to Rocky.

As in 1967, the Rupertsland Express — Heritage Canoe Race will start on the banks of the North Saskatchewan by Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site.

Maxwell, who still canoes, said the 2017 race will end in The Pas, Man., and invitations are just going out now to canoe clubs across the country.

“If they’re tough enough, send in their entries. They’ll have to be tough,” Maxwell said.

He ought to know. He was captain of the Alberta team in 1967 at the age of 31.

The journey to the 1967 race began with “trial” races in 1966. There were 100 paddlers, 10 teams in total, from eight provinces and the two territories. Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island did not compete.

The first trial began in British Columbia at Fort St. James. The canoers raced down the Stuart and Nechako rivers to Prince George, and then down the Fraser River to Vancouver. Then they paddled their big canoes across the Strait of Georgia to Galiano Island, on to Sidney and and around Vancouver Island, ending at Victoria Harbour in front of the provincial legislature buildings.

The second trial run began in Montreal at Expo Island. They paddled along the St. Lawrence and Richelieu rivers, across Lake Champlain, down the Champlain and Hudson rivers, pulling the canoes out at the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor in 1966. That run was intended to also promote the upcoming Expo 67 in Montreal.

The next year the teams then went on to race in the gruelling Centennial Voyageur Canoe Pageant, which began at Rocky on May 24, 1967, and ended 104 days later in Montreal on Sept. 4.

The large canoes — also known as north canoes — each held six men who raced at 60 strokes a minute, switching from one side to the other without pausing. Some days were shorter than others, said Maxwell, but often they paddled for as long as 15 hours a day.

Manitoba won the race, British Columbia was second, and Alberta was third. All participants received cash prizes.

Maxwell said the 1967 paddlers had backgrounds as farmers, miners, lumberjacks and many were trappers. He’s not sure it’s possible to find 100 up-to-the-task paddlers now but he’s hoping. “It’s a very hard sport … when the gun goes in the morning there are no stops for anything.”

Marathon canoeing still goes on in a few communities in Canada and the United States.

Never a week goes by now when someone doesn’t mention the 1967 race to him, Maxwell said.

The original Alberta team included Maxwell, and Archie Griffith, from Rocky; Dave Ellery, Drayton Valley; George and Albert Abel, Robert Poluck, from Calgary; Dave MacLure, Ken Hardy, Sid Webb from Edmonton; and Adam Borys, Medicine Hat.

Since the centennial race, there have been reunions in 1992 and 1999 in Rocky, said Maxwell, who was also chief voyageur during the Northwest Territories centennial in 1970 in a race down the Mackenzie River to the Arctic Ocean.

After the centennial race, the Alberta paddlers built a canoe pavilion at the Rocky Historic park and their north canoe they used to race to Montreal was put on permanent display.

They also buried two time capsules in the pavilion — one to be opened in 2017 and the other after another 25 years, said Maxwell.

He said he suggested another reunion around the time of the capsule opening, and now Clearwater County, the Town of Rocky, the Confluence Heritage Society “and what’s left of my compatriots from 1967” agreed to hold Voyageurs Rendezvous 2017 just before the race to The Pas, he said.

Maxwell was raised on a farm, and he was a a surveyer and helped build oil roads in the 1950s in Northern Alberta when he was young man.

It was there he came across an aboriginal man in 1958 who was driving a dog team in the very remote area. Maxwell, who had always had an interest in historical items, asked the man if he had any such items to sell.

The man returned by dogsled a few days later with a large item wrapped in flour sacks. “In it was the bow of an old birch bark canoe … in red you could see the ‘HBC’ marked across it.”

The man told Maxwell it had come from his grandfather’s grandfather. It was from a time when traders had come for fur and birch bark for canoes.

When Maxwell was 23, he “retired” from the frontier business and bought land in Rocky and built the first motel there. He called it the Voyageur Motel and it’s still there.

The Rocky Mountain North Canoe Brigade begins June 24, 2017, at the Kootnenay Plains and arrives on June 28 at Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site.

The Voyageurs Rendezvous 2017 reunion with a variety of events takes place from June 28 to July 1 at the historic site.

Lap 1 of the Rupertsland Express race — which will offer “serious prize money for all teams” — runs from the historic site to Hwy 11A and back on June 30.

Then on July 1, Canada’s 150th birthday, the race departs, headed to the finish line in The Pas, Man., expected to arrive on July 21.

For more information, contact Maxwell by email at *protected email*

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