For more than 50 years, two social clubs have continued to
offer women linked to APEGGA the opportunity to meet and build
friendships while they enjoy a range of activities. The APEGGA
Women's Club, formed in Edmonton in 1949, features six separate
groups and their regular activities, as well as a number of
full club and mixed events. And since 1944 members of the
PEGG Wives Club of Calgary have been enjoying similar get-togethers
in their community.
The clubs' names may sound anachronistic, but representatives
say the appeal is wide - to any wives or widows of APEGGA
members or any female APEGGA members, whether retired or still
working. The clubs even keep their activities open to former
wives of APEGGA members.
With about 100 members, the APEGGA Women's Club features six
regularly meeting interest groups as well as four social events
each year. "It's just a very warm club. They're very
nice ladies and very welcoming," says Sheila Mitchell,
the club's president. "And there's something for everybody."
Ladies' afternoon bridge, mixed evening bridge, a book club,
cross-country skiing, luncheon explorers and a hiking group
are all part of the mix. "In the summer we walk the different
ravines and the River Valley. For the luncheon group, we don't
just go out to lunch. We pursue an interest as well. We've
toured an antique store and the archives of the City of Edmonton,
that type of thing."
The club holds an annual meeting in May and a membership tea
in September. Women are free to join anytime, however. At
one point membership totalled about 400 women, and Mrs. Mitchell
would love to see the number grow. She points out that the
line-up of interest groups changes with the membership - women
who join play a part in creating new groups.
For Calgary women, there's the PEGG Club Wives. Kathy Litvinchuk,
the club's vice-president, says the club offers a number of
social functions every year, usually starting with a coffee
party in September. There's a mixed social near the end of
September, such as a theatre night or even a car rally.
A fashion show in October is "very popular," says
Mrs. Litvinchuk. It's followed by a mixed Christmas party
and the Snowflake Luncheon Bridge in January.
At the Food for Thought luncheon in the spring, the incoming
president sets the agenda. On March 20 at Heritage Park, Mrs.
Litvinchuk's Food for Thought luncheon will feature Naomi
Whalen, widow of popular Calgary sports journalist Ed Whalen.
The Calgary women also have a number of clubs-within-the-club.
The 260 members choose from bridge clubs, two investment clubs,
a lunch and theatre club, a quilting club, a book club, a
golf club, a hiking and walking club and others.
"The majority of our people are over 50. Often, they're
women looking for something social to do after they've retired,"
says Mrs. Litvinchuk. "But we do have working women,
too, which works because a lot of our activities are held
in the evenings.
"It's a good club, the women are all very supportive
of each other. And the husbands all have something in common
when you put them together. You throw guys together and it
doesn't always work, but it does in this club. Because they're
all engineers or geoscientists, they can always find something
to talk about." She adds: "I belong to so many groups
that are fundraising, but this is just for fun. This is strictly
socializing and friendship."
Thinking of Joining?
The APEGGA Wives Club
President Sheila Mitchell
Membership Chair Marian Gray
The PEGG Wives Club
Vice-President Kathy Litvinchuk
Membership Convener Margaret Irving