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Meet the Vancouver Island kid who loves BC Hydro

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Jennifer Maniezzo
For bchydro.com

"I just want to know when we're getting our new smart meter. I have a lot of summer camps to go to and I don't want to miss it when it happens."

Most 7-year olds are concerned with video game scores, whether there's a new movie coming out featuring their favourite superhero or if the Canucks are winning the Stanley Cup. Evan Woo, on the other hand, is more interested in when his new BC Hydro smart meter will be installed.

BC Hydro President and CEO, Dave Cobb, presents Evan with a hard hat and hi-vis vest.

We met Evan when he and his family attended the Victoria Open House on July 9, where he was greeted with quite the surprise: a meeting with Dave Cobb, President and CEO, and a private tour of the Victoria District Office.

"I got a helmet and a vest from the president because I like BC Hydro so much," says Evan. "And there was a person, [BC Hydro Stations Field Manager] Glen Carter, and he gave us a tour of the trucks and we saw meters that are going to be recycled – that was my favourite part."

His day at the open house was just the latest for this BC Hydro buff.

"When Evan was 4, we were playing in the back yard and there was something on the side of the house that drew his attention – he was mesmerized by the meter," explains Ben Woo, Evan's dad. "He was looking at all the dials and meters, asking what it was for. He developed this curiosity that drew him to the meter whenever he would go out to play."

Soon Evan wanted to know whether everyone had a meter on their house, and he'd stop to look for them when out with his parents.

He began creating collages featuring meters and BC Hydro's logo on cardboard presentation boards. "Evan pretends to be a presenter on electric meters and he teaches myself, my wife and daughter about power and electricity," said Ben. 

For his sixth birthday, Evan even had cupcakes with BC Hydro written across the candy and the BC Hydro logo decorated party plates in icing. "I like the logo because it's green and blue. Sometimes there's a sticker on the meters with the BC Hydro logo too," Evan says.

And now he's turned his attention towards BC Hydro's new smart meters.

"There's a guy from Corix and he comes and unscrews it [the old meter] and replaces it with a smart meter," says Evan of his latest interest, watching the smart meter informational videos on bchydro.com.

Evan's interest in BC Hydro and electricity isn't one that his friends share. Although it's unlikely that there's enough interested kids his age to start a BC Hydro fan club, Evan doesn't mind.

"They don't know much about it, they just don't understand it," he said "They usually like hockey."

Which isn't to say that Evan doesn't like hockey, too. Ryan Kesler is Evan's favourite Team Power Smart Leader and he wasn't worried by the Canucks not winning the Stanley Cup, either. "That just means the Canucks will play better next year," he says with the confidence of a true Canucks fan.

He's confident about what his future holds, too. Evan might only be seven, but he has a better idea of what he wants to be when he grows up than most adults do.

"I want to be an electrician so I can fix electric meters and replace the old ones. I want to see how much electricity we use," he says. "Fixing the electricity poles where the wires are in case there is a power outage, is what I think is the most fun because they [Power Line Technicians or PLTs] climb very high. I like high places because I'm not afraid of heights but my mom is."

Here at BC Hydro, we'll be watching Evan's budding PLT career with interest – and letting him know when their very own smart meter will arrive.