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1000 Doors!

Today I knocked on my 1000th door. And what an adventure it has been!

I’ve been dragged into a party when someone mistook me for the guest of honor. I’ve found myself standing in a stranger’s basement helping them haul a couch out. I’ve been given the best homemade baklava I have ever tasted. I’ve been taken on a garden tour and given some great tips. I’ve had to decline an invite into a hot tub. I’ve happily accepted an invitation to sit around a campfire.

Along the way, I have met some fascinating people.

I’ve met a 62-year-old who had just adopted a family member’s baby. I’ve met an 18-year-old who was excited to vote for the first time. I’ve met a brand new Canadian Citizen also excited to vote. I’ve met people who had been in town for 7 weeks, and people who have been in town for over 7 decades.  I’ve met people who have put tremendous time, effort, and thought into building our businesses, non-profits, and City departments. I’ve met others who want to get involved but don’t know how. And I’ve chatted with more cute kids and petted more handsome dogs than I can count.

I love the memories I have collected. I detailed one of my favorites in my last blog post (www.votebressey.ca/blog/emotionaldoorknocking).

I’ve knocked on 1000 doors. I’ve been to dozens of community events. I’ve been working hard to engage people online. I’ve asked questions as I have been in local businesses. This hard work has led to hundreds upon hundreds of conversations. Here are some of my observations so far:

  • There is some cool art on people’s lawns and steps. Keep your eyes out for it.
  • People are generally positive about Grande Prairie. Sure, there are frustrations they have and changes they want. But for the most part, they agree that it is a good place to live.
  • You get what you pay for with shoes- my pair is already wearing out.
  • I was advised to only door knock in high turnout divisions, but I didn’t want to do that. I’ve done door knocking in every voting division. In general, people are more willing to talk in the neighbourhoods that had lower turnouts in the 2013 election. This was surprising to me, although I have a few theories about why this happens.
  • Vinyl siding and concrete reflect a lot of heat- front steps in direct sunlight are HOT!
  • When you ask “what is an important issue?” the first thing someone says will almost always be taxes, potholes, or crime. But for most people, there is another issue they think is more important if they think a little.
  • I need to invest in some better front porch furniture. There is some comfy looking stuff out there! And it looks even comfier when you have been door knocking for hours…
  • Many people have big frustrations that are easy to solve with better communication from the City. Many people are also wanting more information about how the City operates and how Council makes some of its decisions.
  • If I get elected, I’m really going to enjoy the “being out there to hear from people” part of the job.
  • People want to be engaged. They just don’t know how. Our leaders need to work harder at being “out there” talking to people. Just being approachable is not enough.

I’m knocking on doors because I want it to be easy for you to meet me and let me know your ideas, thoughts, and concerns for our city. If you have received one of my postcards at home, that means I personally knocked on your door. If I haven’t knocked on your door yet, I hope I get to it soon: I plan to knock on a few thousand more. But you don’t have to wait for me. If you want to chat, please reach out to me through social media or my website. When you see me in the community, feel free to stop me to chat.

I also want to make it easy for you to talk to other candidates. Checkout www.voteBressey.ca/vote. On this page, I will be posting links to every candidate website and Facebook page that is brought online. I will also be posting voting information in the fall. If you bookmark it, it will point you to updated information you need to make an informed vote.

Finally, I want to make it easy for you to talk to other people. I’ve created something called the GP Round Table. This is a Facebook group and series of live events meant to give everyone a chance to talk and learn about our city. Find out more at www.gpRoundTable.ca.

I’m proud of knocking on 1000 doors before most candidates have even started campaigning. I’m working hard to connect with people. I hope you vote for me on October 16th so that I can continue this work. But more importantly, I hope you get involved in the election conversation. The main reason I am working so hard is because I want everyone to know that they have a say.

Thanks for talking with me about how to make Grande Prairie more sustainable, livable, and connected!

-Dylan

Bonus: if you want to see me talk about door knocking, checkout my last Facebook Live Q&A. This link will take you right to a question about knocking on doors: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGrZW129jKA#t=4m22s