A detail from the City of Yellowknife's program registration website on September 18, 2023.
The City of Yellowknife’s website opened a section for residents to book fall programming on Monday – but some programs appeared to have oddly precise age-related strings attached.
In particular, anyone aged 100 or over should pay close attention to the programs they’re booking.
Adult dog sledding? Beginner taekwondo? Christmas tag-making? No dice. The maximum age for those is listed as 99 years.
But if that rules you out – and congratulations, by the way – don’t lose heart. You can join Introduction to Cricket, which welcomes attendees aged 12 to 108 years and 11 months.
Heck, you can sign up for Level 1 Italian all the way up to the age of 115 years and 11 months.
Just don’t dwell on the apparent sexism in centenarian tennis. Yellowknife’s ladies’ tennis program only lets you in up to the age of 99 years and eight months, but the men’s program runs until the age of 115.
These are, obviously, not the actual age limits, even if they did get screengrabbed and shared among plenty of bewildered Yellowknifers on Monday.
Sarah Sibley, a city spokesperson who admirably took time to respond to an inquiry about this, said staff had prioritized getting the listings “ready to go as soon as possible.”
Hammering away at keyboards entering course information, staff had to pick any old figure for each course’s maximum age, even though most adult courses realistically don’t have one. Most went for 99, some went higher. If you’re 100 and really want to make Christmas tags, chance are you’ll be let in.
“Our staff are going to be working to make these consistent across the board,” Sibley wrote, “but for all purposes, it shouldn’t impact people registering.”
As of 2022, the NWT Bureau of Statistics reported there were six people – one woman and five men – aged 100 or over in the territory.
They are each understood to have signed up for swimming lessons aged 27, and remain on a waiting list.