Mike MacSorely is the new general manager of Cloverdale Rodeo and Exhibition Association.
MacSorely, who has more than 20 years in the event business - 14 of which were with the PNE - spent his first week on the new job getting his bearings.
"I'm really just excited to be in the new position and really excited to figure out what's going on," he said.
MacSorely said he left the PNE after the Olympics and spent the intervening time managing restaurants. But the excitement of events is hard to let go, he said, and when the opening came up at the rodeo association, he put in his name.
"Once you're in the event business it's really hard to leave," he said. "The excitement of the once-off events is great."
Born and raised in North Vancouver, where he still lives, MacSorley has long been a fan of the Cloverdale Rodeo. One of his goals is to improve on the annual western fest.
"I want it to be better, of course, and 'better' means different things to different people so I'm working closely with our board to find out what issues they have that they want to see improved."
As for himself, one of the things he would like to see is the western theme carried throughout the event's country fair too.
"It's a great theme and if we can incorporate it throughout the grounds I think that would be tremendous."
But the fairground is a year-round concern, not just the home of the May long weekend rodeo and fair, and this is a large part of MacSorley's new job. The fairground is home to eight facilities, with a fulltime staff of 10 to run and maintain it all.
"I think what we need to do is make sure that people do understand that we're a year-round facility as well as the rodeo, and to ensure that we have more people appreciating the grounds and using the grounds on a more regular basis, and then making sure that everybody in Cloverdale and Surrey feels good about the rodeo itself and country fair."
There are plenty of events held at the agriplex and exhibition halls, he noted, in addition to the popular weekly flea market.
"I just got a call today about the (RCMP) Musical Ride so we're just trying to see if we can secure that for the summer," he said. "It's a tremendous event. It's coming through B.C. so we're going to work hard to get that here as well."
© Copyright 2013