2008’s first Calgarian born 15 seconds after midnight
robin kuniski/for metro calgary
Seconds past midnight New Year’s Day, Calgary’s first newborn arrived and her parents couldn’t be prouder of their bundle of joy.
Portia Elizabeth Hitchins was born 6 lbs., 6 oz. by Caesarean section 15 seconds after the clock struck 12 at Foothills Hospital, making her Calgary’s 2008 New Year’s baby.
“It’s spectacular! We knew she’d make a big splash coming into this world and now everybody else knows it too,” said proud mom Liz Rogers. “I just can’t believe it. It’s hard not to look at her.”
Rogers said the best part about her daughter being born at midnight on New Year’s is the birthday celebrations she will have.
“It’s just so cool that people will be partying on her birthday for the rest of her life. She’s just so special all around. We couldn’t be happier.”
Rogers, 29, and 34-year-old father Michael Hitchins were beaming as they looked at their daughter in the hospital room, cameras flashing.
“Apparently she is good in a crowd of people,” Mom joked about the sleeping baby.
“She’s going to be all over Facebook soon,” Dad quipped.
“We had joked about having the New Year’s baby for the past three months but we didn’t really think it would happen. It’s very surreal,” a smiling Hitchins said.
The parents have been together for about a year they said and named the baby Portia after a character in one of Shakespeare’s plays, The Merchant of Venice, to honour her grandmother who is an English professor. Elizabeth is the name of her godmother.
The happy family received a top-of-the-line jogging stroller from a local company, Chariot Carriers. The hospital’s medical staff presented the gift to them when the baby was born.
Dr. Richard Musto, deputy medical officer of the Calgary Health Region, said the hospital was happy to do the honours.
“We’re thrilled to be able to present the family with this gift. Encouraging people to be active and live healthy lifestyles is a priority for the region,” he said.
Calgary’s New Year’s baby is also believed to be the first baby born in Canada this year.