Order Your Shelterbelt Trees Today

Big Lakes County is selling trees!

Click here to find out what trees you can order.

Click here to fill out the tree order form.

Big Lakes County is also hosting a Shelterbelt Workshop:

Meet The New Big Lakes County Fire Chief

Big Lakes County is excited to welcome Fire Chief John McDermott to our team!

R.A. John McDermott began his career in emergency services in January of 2000 with the Lesser Slave Regional Fire Service. Among other things, he’s been educated, trained and certified as a Professional Firefighter, HAZMAT Operator, Fire Service Instructor and Fire Investigator. John has extensive experience in operational firefighting, command, formal instruction and fire origin & cause investigations including evidence collection. In 2013, he became certified by the International Association of Arson Investigators as a Fire Investigation Technician (IAAI-FIT). He is also FI-210 trained as a Wildfire Investigator.

John serves the FIAA, Chapter #38 of the IAAI as the President (2017-2019). In addition to sitting on the Board of Directors of the FIAA since 2010, he also serves the IAAI as a Training & Education Committee member. As a Committee member, he sits on the ITC Sub-Committee (Co-Chair), the Curriculum Development Sub-Committee (Committee Member) and the Non-U.S. Outreach Sub-Committee (Chair), working with Fire Investigators from around the world to bring training and education to the fire & arson investigation community, globally.

John lives in Northwest Alberta where he serves Big Lakes County Fire Services as Fire Chief where he oversees five stations with over 100 fire service personnel.

We Need Your Help To Develop The Lesser Slave Lake Regional Forest Managment Plan

The Lesser Slave Lake Regional Forest Management Plan is a roadmap for forest use and sustainability in the Slave Lake region. The plan is due for submission in 2020 with approval in 2021.  This is a joint forest management plan between Tolko Industries Ltd., Vanderwell Contractors (1971) Ltd., and West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. that will govern forest harvesting and renewal from 2021-2031. These Slave Lake area forest products companies will work together to develop a plan and create shared goals, standards, and objectives.  The success of the plan and the strength of these objectives depends on public input. The companies welcome and are seeking public input into the plan. Together, we can create a sustainable, multi-purpose forest in the Slave Lake region.

This management plan overlaps the Big Lakes County boundaries (see image below). The purpose is to increase public knowledge of the plan, and increase public input/feedback.


Calling All Tourism Entrepreneurs

Big Lakes County is partnering with Alberta Tourism Business Development to host a Tourism Entrepreneurship Start-up Seminar (TESS).  This one-day free seminar is taking place on February 12, 2018 from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm at the Provincial Building Board Room B 5226 53rd Ave High Prairie, AB.

TESS is designed to assist start-up tourism entrepreneurs and businesses (from concept to about two years in business) access information and resources to help increase the likelihood of a successful start-up tourism business. TESS teaches key industry concepts for new tourism companies and also includes a take-home workbook for self-work and an “expert café” of short meetings with tourism specialists in finance, marketing, and labour.

To register click here.


Upcoming seminar locations and dates include:

TESS Cold Lake, AB – February 7, 2018 from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm at Rural Alberta Business Centre 5412 55th St, Unit A (Next to Boom Radio) Cold Lake, AB

TESS High Prairie, AB – February 12, 2018 from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm at the Provincial Building Board Room B 5226 53rd Ave High Prairie, AB

TESS Drumheller, AB – March 19, 2018 from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm at Badlands Community Facility 80 Veterans Way Drumheller, AB

TESS Airdrie, AB – April 12, 2018 from 8:00 am – 5:00 pm at Hampton Inn & Suites 52 East Lake Ave NE, Airdrie, AB


Notice of Public Hearing – Land Use Bylaw Amendment

Council for Big Lakes County is considering a proposed amendment to the Big Lakes County Land Use Bylaw No. 03-2017.

Big Lakes Connections Winter Newsletter

Make sure you check your mailbox for your Big Lakes County resident newsletter.
If you would like to subscribe to our newsletter please visit: http://eepurl.com/cZL3n9

Click here to download the Big Lakes Connections Winter Newsletter.

Thank you to the talented Jodi Sware from A Thousand Words Photography for providing us with her beautiful pictures.  

High Prairie & Area Chamber of Commerce Façade Improvement Award

This was a brand new award added to the High Prairie & Area Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala, which took place October 21st at the Elks Rodeo Hall.

The award recognizes companies and trades people who have improved the curb appeal of businesses in High Prairie and throughout the county. It goes to company owners who take extra care and pride in their exteriors and the overall experience of customers and passersby.

This is the Chamber’s first cash prize and the first partnership between the High Prairie & Area Chamber of Commerce and the Big Lakes County Economic Development Authority. Both organizations work to create an environment for businesses to thrive. Revitalization through improved properties is top of mind for both High Prairie and Big Lakes County. It helps to enhance community pride, improves the resident and tourism experience, and drives economic development.

We welcome this collaboration and thank the Town of High Prairie, Big Lakes County, and Progress Unlimited Consulting for their generous support. If you would like to help sponsor next year’s award, please contact the Chamber.

In Big Lakes County, we would like to recognize the High Prairie & District Golf Club for its new and improved decking. Golfers from near and far enjoyed and raved about the decking and concrete improvements all season. The Golf Club hired Cody Calahoon to do the work. Great work making an important facility in our community even better.


In High Prairie, the façade improvement award goes to Jodi Sware, owner of One Thousand Words Photography. Jodi transformed an old building in downtown High Prairie by MacIntyre Park. She worked with several contractors, but mostly with Kenneth Cox on the façade. Don’t you love the modern industrial feel of the new façade? It’s a new jewel on 50th street.


Congratulations to all the nominees and winners!

Special Guests Chief Clarence Louis & Linsay Willier with Reeve Matthews

Boards & Committees

On October 24th, 2017 the Big Lakes County Councillors appointed the following committees:

Meet Your New Councilliors

Meet your new Councillors!

Back left to right: Councillor Bissel (Ward 7), Councillor Charrois (Ward 8),
Councillor Killeen (Ward 4), Councillor Simard (Ward 6), Councillor Nygaard (Ward 5)

Front left to right: Councillor Welch (Ward 2), Reeve Matthews (Ward 3),
Deputy Reeve Marx (Ward 1) & Councillor Stewart (Ward 9)

Official Election Results