The 100 Mile House Lions Club’s Amazing Race would have been impossible if it weren’t for one non-member in particular.
Shirley Slater organized her first race for a friend in town roughly five years ago.
A huge fan of the television show, she decided to create her own large-scale scavenger hunt, leading teams all around the area between 100 Mile House and Kamloops.
The race, which took at least two months for her to plan, was so successful that she planned another and another and another.
When asked what she gets out of all her hard work and planning, she said: “just happiness. I just love doing them.”
She said she usually plans races for weddings, “or for my own family, that’s it.”
She was headed to Abbotsford the day after speaking to the Free Press, to put on yet another race. This one for her niece.
For Slater, it’s the intricate details that make a race so special.
She has incorporated wedding theme colours or a first-dance song into past races, infusing personal aspects of the people she is celebrating.
“You have to have things absolutely perfect,” she said.
Slater has been a 100 Mile House resident for the past 40 years. Before retiring 10 years ago, she worked with people with special needs at Cedar Crest.
Diane Collens, the Lions’ membership director, said Slater has been a good friend for a long time.
After hearing all about her friend’s races, she finally approached her about planning one for the Lions.
“I just said to her one day, ‘You know, I really think that would be something the Lions would be interested in doing.’”
Collens said Slater was instrumental in getting the race off the ground and guiding the committee through the whole planning process.
Not only was she at every meeting, Collens said Slater also got the Lions good deals from local businesses.
“She is a very generous person in sharing her ideas … those ideas weren’t mine.”
Collens hopes Slater will help her plan their next race and said she wouldn’t do it without her.
Val Clemont also praised Slater’s incredible ability to generate ideas.
“She’s like throwing popcorn onto a hot griddle,” she said. “She just pops out ideas. It’s just unbelievable.”
The Lions new president called Slater “a behind-the-scenes kind of person,” saying she gives a lot of her time but doesn’t do it for the accolades.
“She’s a delight to work with.”
Slater said she’s already coming up with new ideas for the Lions next Amazing Race.
“The 100 Mile Lions are a great bunch of people to work with.”