Arriving in St. John’s on November 2nd, the main purpose of my visit was to attend the Sandy Pond Alliance Annual General Meeting. But Ken Kavanagh, St. John’s chapter chair, managed to squeeze a lot of work into my 24-hr visit, including the AGM, supper with Chapter members, breakfast with a local politician, and a visit to Long Harbour (Sandy Pond)! We started off with the AGM for the Sandy Pond Alliance, a group of local activists, biologists and concerned citizens, and both provincial and national organizations. The Council has been a part of this group since the beginning, so it only seemed fitting that we be well represented at the first AGM. At the meeting, we were able to approve by-laws and elect a new executive committee along with adding a few new Directors to the group. We talked strategy, and formed a new committee specific to setting up a facebook page and other social media. After leaving other members of the Alliance, Ken and I met up with other chapter activists and members, including Mike Manning (chapter contact person), Chris Rolton, John and Nancy Gibson. We had great food and wonderful conversation, including an update about the SPA and work on the CETA (the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement). And then off to Bell Island via a rough ferry ride, for another cozy sleep chez Kavanagh. The following morning, Ken and I had a breakfast meeting with a member of the St. John’s city council to discuss our concerns with the CETA. Then after popping in to the Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour’s meeting to say hi, we started our journey of retracing our steps to Sandy Pond. Approximately 1hr15mins from St. John’s, Long Harbour is the community closest to Sandy Pond and Vale’s development. Ken and I went to visit the community and check it out, since the last time we were there was in May of 2009 for the Sandy Pond Picnic. We also met with Andy Murphy from Long Harbour, long time opponent of the destruction of Sandy Pond. He showed us photos of the trout he and others fished out of Sandy Pond, and of the division in the community as a result of the decision that Sandy Pond needs to be destroyed. Most jobs going to community members, are in fact going to Councillors, their families and friends, he explained. The entrance to the lake is no longer visable, and in it’s place we saw Vale’s parking lot and development. For more info or detail, don’t hesitate to be in touch!