The Five Pillars

CEAC's Work is Centered Around Five Pillars: 

Culture and Recreation

Education and Wellness

Governance and Partnerships

Local Economy

Natural and Built Environments

These pillars come from the Hinton Community Sustainability Plan, which was accepted by Council on May 17, 2011. To see the full document, click this link; Links below direct to smaller portions of the document, divided by subject. 

Culture and Recreation
Gateway to Alberta’s Northern Rockies, our community is home to many who draw inspiration from the surrounding landscape.   Some of us are inspired to create through visual, performing and literary arts.   Others are inspired to recreate knowing the value of an active lifestyle and moved by the natural beauty of our community.

During community consultation for this sustainability plan, we heard the message loud and clear:    Whether our creative outlet leans to active living or artistic explorations, we identify strongly with the community’s arts, culture and recreation organizations and programs.    We have already proven our ability to mount happening festivals and create go-to destinations for recreation both inside and out.    We want to continue building on this community’s great potential as a place where diverse cultural and recreational opportunities combine to boost quality of life.

Read more in the CSP

 How to get involved:

  • If you’re an artist, talk to the Town about sharing your art with the community through the Creative Fronts initiative, which puts to use vacant store fronts to enrich the community with local art.
  • If you’re a business owner, consider inviting local performers to use your business location. It is enriching for the community, and sure to draw a crowd to your business. Or consider getting your name out there by sponsoring a local event or fundraiser.
  • Attend community events. Hinton is well-known for the great recreational and cultural events offered throughout the year. To name a few, the Föhn Festival, the Beaver Bike Festival, the Snowflake Parade, and the Wild Mountain Music Festival attract visitors and residents alike. Attendance to these events means that they can continue to grow and flourish.
  • Check out the Hinton Archives, located at the Hinton Municipal Library. If you are a long-time Hinton resident, consider donating some of your Hinton memorabilia to share with the community.

Support one of these great organizations with your time and donations:

  • Arts Club, which spearheads local arts events and workshops.
  • Break-A-Leg Theatre, which promotes live theatrical productions.
  • Hinton Mountain Bike Association, a group that makes the most of Alberta’s Mountain Bike Mecca through weekly club rides, trail revival, and trail mapping. This group is credited with building the Hinton Mountain Bike Park.
  • Hinton On Stage Society, which presents a minimum of three concerts a year.
  • Hinton Historical Society, whose members are devoted to the preservation and appreciation of Hinton’s heritage.
  • Hinton Performing Arts Society, which is a major supporter of the performing arts scene in Hinton.
  • Rotary Club of Hinton, which focuses on volunteerism, and has been involved in many events, from the construction of the Beaver Boardwalk to the Junior Firefighters Program.

Education and Wellness
We are a caring community; we are willing to work together through difficult issues.   We’re quietly generous with our time and expertise.    We focus on the future, on what is possible, and take action to get things done.   We are active, with an abundance of energy and heart to match.    We have numerous informal and formal places to soak up knowledge and skills.

We are also a community with unique challenges.   While our median income is higher than the Alberta norm, the gap between rich and poor is also greater.    We lack some essential services prompting families, seniors and youth to head elsewhere for support and even to live.   With no permanent post-secondary institution, we can’t offer the full menu of training and apprenticeships that would allow students to fully prepare right here for jobs with our largest employers.

That said, we are already gearing up to fill gaps in our education and wellness landscape. Just a few examples:    Plans for a post-secondary campus are underway, our array of affordable housing is expanding, youth programming is on the rise and we are working hard to attract a broader array of health care services to the town.

We aim to be a community with education and wellness opportunities that attract new residents and inspire everyone to stay.


How to get involved:

  • Donate! There are many valuable organizations in town that would put your time or donations to good use. To name a few, clothes or unwanted household items can go to the Share Shop, food to the Food Bank, and furniture to Neighborhood Link. Donating means environmental, social, and personal benefits…it’s a win-win-win!
  • Become a donor!- An organ donor or donate blood.
  • Become a volunteer! Donate your time or resources to a local, club, committee or movement.
  • Be friendly! Say hi to neighbors, hold open doors, and smile at strangers. These small actions all help to make the world a little bit brighter.

Support one of these great organizations with your time and donations:

  • Good Companion Senior Citizens Club, which provides activities, games, and social gatherings for those 50+.
  • Hinton Parents for Play, a non-profit society with the goal of providing a safe place for active families to play indoors.
  • Hinton District Victim Services, dedicated to providing support, resources, and other services for victims of crime or trauma.
  • Hinton Healthcare Foundation, an organization that is dedicated to enhancing the health services in the Hinton area.
  • Hinton Masonic Lodge, a group committed to community activism, providing involvement opportunities for members and visitors alike.
  • The Kinsman Club, an organization that helps our community in many different ways.
  • Parent Link Centre, which provides support and resources for parents and caregivers.
  • Hinton and District SPCA, which serves Hinton, Jasper, Edson, Grande Cache, and Yellowhead County, providing pets with homes, and people with companions. 
Governance and Partnerships

Community leadership is shared among numerous boards, committees and grassroots groups working to advance specific causes.    The insight brought to the table by residents who care about our community is essential to meeting the needs of the unique mix of people who live here.

Our community is served by two municipal governments:  the Town of Hinton and Yellowhead County.  Town residents are represented by the mayor and six at large councillors; those in surrounding rural areas are represented by the Ward 8 councillor for Yellowhead County.    The entire community is represented provincially by the Member of the Legislature Assembly for the constituency of West Yellowhead and federally by the Member of Parliament for the Yellowhead Riding.

Among both residents and community leaders, there is a sense that a sustainable future depends on our ability to reach across divisions and differences and partner together to accomplish shared goals.

Read More in the CSP

How to get involved:

  • Attend a Town Council Meeting, which happen the first and third Tuesdays of each month. Be informed, have your voice heard, and contribute to the important discussions about our community.
  • Share your thoughts, ideas, and information with the Town of Hinton. Go to our website, and fill out a “Hinton Listens” form. This is a great way to engage with local government, to share concerns, to ask questions, and to request services.
  • Join a club, board or committee.
  • Become a volunteer firefighter!
  • Stay informed! Regularly check in on Hinton’s website, www.hinton.ca and subscribe through Notify Me to receive email or text message updates on events, opportunities, and changes in your community.
  • Vote! Your opinion MATTERS.

Local Economy

Strategically situated along the vital Yellowhead Highway (Highway 16), the town of Hinton is well positioned to serve as a go-to hub for the trading region.    Our local economy is driven by the extraction and processing of pulp, lumber, coal and gas and supplemented by the hospitality, retail, public service, tourism and health service sectors.

This industry composition allows our workforce to enjoy higher than provincial median income.    On the other hand, it results in an income split that sees some workers paid significantly more than others.

Relying as much as we do on the resource sector also exposes businesses and employees to swings in global commodity markets.    Given that reality, we are seeking to diversify our economic base by fostering sustainable local businesses.   As a bonus, diversification will expand the community’s shopping options, which are more limited than many would like.

Read more in the CSP

How to get involved:

  • Shop local! For every $100 spent in locally-owned stores, $66 returns to the economy through taxes, payroll, and other expenditures. Consider trying a new local place—whether it’s a coffee shop, a clothing store, a restaurant, or a gift shop, you might discover a new favorite retail destination.
  • Spread the word! Did you find a great deal, an exciting product, or great customer service at a Hinton business? Share it on social media to let others know.
  • If you’re a business owner, join the Hinton and District Chamber of Commerce it will help Hinton’s economy, and in turn, it will help your business thrive!
  • Share your Hinton Pride! Don’t be shy to share what you love about Hinton… a positive town image means more residents, more businesses, and a community that continues to grow and evolve.
Natural and Built Environments

Located alongside the Athabasca River in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, our community has an abundance of natural resources:   coal, gas, forest, water and sheer natural beauty.

Perhaps the most obvious resource is the rich foothill forest stretching across the rolling terrain.    Besides employing  hundreds of our residents and offering outdoor delights via foot, ski and wheel, the forest contains essential habitat for a wide variety of plants and animals that are under stress due to human activities.    Thus, the forest stands as a constant reminder that sustainability depends on our ability to balance human uses with the protection and enhancement of ecosystems, natural habitats and wildlife corridors.

Our setting inspires and informs our built environment as well.   Spread out along the Athabasca River, with the Rockies as a backdrop to the west, we have made a commitment to reflect our alpine surroundings in streetscapes and storefronts, and are beginning to see the benefits of that decision.    Realizing that the imperative of living sustainably applies to urban development as well as design, we are also determined to make our urban areas more compact and pedestrian friendly.  In making best use of the land entrusted to us, we also aim to shift our habits away from vehicles to more active, healthier lifestyles.

Read More in the CSP

How to get involved:

  • Don’t litter! When you’re enjoying our beautiful outdoors, remember to use the various garbage bins around town. If you’re going for a walk, consider bringing a garbage bag and picking up some of the trash you see along the way.
  • Take advantage of Hinton’s Community Garden. Growing your own food is good for the environment and for your wallet.
  • Clean up after your pets! The Town of Hinton has installed several bag stations around town to make it easier for you to keep our walkways clean.
  • Commute consciously! Hinton has a great local transit system, with extended hours, covered transit shelters, affordable prices, and additional stops to meet the transportation needs of Hinton residents. With transit, carpooling, and bicycling all as viable options, it’s not difficult to get around town and help the environment at the same time.
  • Take advantage of the great FREE facilities Hinton has to offer—the Hinton Mountain Bike Park (donations appreciated!), the Beaver Boardwalk, the Skateboard Park, the extensive trail system, the Athabasca Riverfront Park, and the Spray Park are all wonderful, free recreation opportunities in Hinton.
  • While you’re there, remember to treat them with respect so that they can continue to make our community better.
  • Use the extensive waste management facility that Hinton has right in town—it makes proper disposal of recyclables, organic material, and hazardous items simple.
Support one of these great organizations with your time or donations:

  • Mary Reimer Park Board, which is involved in the management of Mary Reimer Park.
  • West Athabasca Watershed Bioregional Society, a local group dedicated to creating sustainable communities.
  • The Hinton Mountain Bike Association (HMBA)—if you’re a biker or a hiker, then HMBA makes your life better. They are responsible for a great deal of trail restoration and formation.