Dewberry Chuckwagons Return

Chance Bensmiller (front) turning the corner to the final stretch. Kurt and Cruise Bensmiller follow. Photos Elaina John The Dewberry Chuckwagons returned on August 15 and 16. The Chucks are usually in June, but were postponed this year. Due to COVID-19, the sportsgrounds provided hand sanitizers and posted signs to encourage social distancing. The turnout was much bigger than expected, and with 200 people in the grandstands, many latecomers were asked to stay in their vehicles to spectate the races. The races were wild as they featured many successful chuckwagon drivers, including three-time WPCA winner and Dewberry native Kurt Bensmiller, two-time WPCA winner Rick Fraser, and 2019 CPCA Cha

Alan Jackson Experience Coming To Town

Aaron Halliday. Photo submitted The Alan Jackson Experience is back by popular demand! After the first Alan Jackson tribute show in 2018, local fans were eager to have the Alan Jackson Experience return to Vermilion. On August 20, The Alan Jackson Experience will be back in Vermilion at the Legion. Frontman of the Alan Jackson Experience Aaron Halliday grew up in a musical household and has enjoyed listening and playing music for as long as he can remember. Halliday began the Alan Jackson Experience 25 years ago, as Jackson’s music has been a huge inspiration in Halliday’s own creative endeavours. Due to COVID-19, 60 shows have been eliminated from Halliday’s schedule this year. Although man

Open Farm Days At Chatsworth Farm

Valerie Roberts with Old School Cheesery selling dairy products at Chatsworth Farm. Photos Elaina John On August 15, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Chatsworth Farm participated in Alberta Open Farm Days, an open house event initiated by the province to increase farm visitation, on-farm sales, and give visitors a chance to understand where their food comes from. Chatsworth Farm is a first-generation farm begun by Rick and Johanna Wasylik, whose children, Charlotte, Alex, and Nick work on the farm and operated much of the guided tour. The family also had seven friends helping around the farm during the tour. Chatsworth Open Farm Days consisted of a guided tour of the home half-section of the farm and

Town Council

Vermilion Town Hall. Photo Elaina John Vermilion Town Council held a regular meeting on August 11. Council discussed a request for proposal by the Economic Development Committee that the Town of Vermilion should upgrade their website. In the previously held Economic Development Committee meeting, the committee decided to work with eSolutions to develop an app compatible with and easy to use on cellphones. Councillor Pulyk mentioned that eSolutions has previously worked with various other communities including the City of Lloydminster. “They certainly demonstrated their technological abilities to create a site that meets the needs of the community,” Councillor Pulyk explained. A motion that e

COVID-19 Update

As of August 13, the Central Zone of Alberta is down to 81 active cases. The County of Vermilion River is up to five active cases, the MD of Wainwright is down to 44 active cases, Flagstaff County is down to three active cases, Viking has had a huge jump down from 64 active cases to two active cases. The County of St. Paul has one active case, as does Cold Lake. There are no active cases to report in the MD of Bonnyville or the MD of Provost. In total, Alberta has gone down from 1125 active cases to 1036. #COVID19

Government Of Alberta Invests Heavily In Vermilion's Lakeland College

Premier Jason Kenney and Dr. Alice Wainwright-Stewart share a rendering of the renovated WHT Mead Animal Science Centre. They’re joined by agricultural sciences students TJ Gonsalves (front row left) and Rianne Harrish (front row right) as well as Lakeland’s board chair Scott Webb, Garth Rowswell, MLA for Vermilion-Lloydminster-Wainwright, and Demetrios Nicolaides, Minister of Advanced Education (back row from left). Photo submitted Premier Jason Kenney and Minister of Advanced Education, Demetrios Nicolaides along with dignitaries MLA for Lloydminster-Vermilion-Wainwright Garth Rowswell and President and CEO of Lakeland College Dr. Alice Wainwright-Stewart visited the Vermilion Animal Scien

The Cabin Door Open For Business

Heather Wyard-Scott. Photo submitted The Cabin Door is offering various life coaching services to Mannville and surrounding areas. Heather Wyard-Scott began The Cabin Door to give back what life experiences have taught her and put them to good use. Over her thirty years in the workforce, Wyard-Scott has acquired much experience in numerous different fields from agriculture to real estate and has owned and operated a bookkeeping business as well as an auto detailing business. In addition, Wyard- Scott has undergone training in psychology, Reiki, and business administration. The general categories that Wyard-Scott offers services for are personal growth and balance, small business growth an

Rotary Club Online Auction

The much-anticipated Vermilion Rotary Club Garage Sale was changed to an online auction this year. The Rotary Club typically holds an annual garage sale in April, but due to COVID-19, they were unable to. Despite being unable to host a garage sale, the Rotary Club had a surplus of donated furniture, many of which came from families with seniors moving into the lodge. The Rotary Club doesn’t usually take as many donations as they had received this year, but they made exceptions as many donations were from seniors moving into long term care facilities. “It does us good to assist families in life-changing situations,” said Rotarian Brenda Lee. “So, we said, ‘sure!’”. In the beginning, the R

Local Business 19 8ighty 9ine

Clothing retailer 19 8ighty 9ine has had an unexpected surge in business this year. The business was started by Glenda Duchak seven years ago. Duchak makes various clothing including sweaters and scarves. When COVID-19 hit, Duchak began a new route. It was a friend of Duchak’s, who is a nurse in New York, that suggested Duchak make some masks for her and other hospital personnel in New York. “That’s where it all began,” Duchak explained. Since COVID-19 began, Duchak reports to have made over 2000 face masks. Approximately 750 of which have been donated to various hospitals and the Calgary International Airport. “I had absolutely no intention of making 2000 of anything,” Duchak said with

Webb's Location Awareness

Webb's Mustang. Photo Elaina John This spring, Webb’s Machinery took hold of three new locations in Wainwright, St. Paul, and Consort due to the absorption of Tri-Ag Implements. To raise awareness for this recent expansion, Webb’s is touring a ’49 Mercury and Mustang to their now six locations. Originally, Mike Webb hoped to have the vehicles featured in the Vermilion Parade, but due to COVID-19 and the cancellation of the parade, Webb’s had to opt to tour the vehicles to various Webb’s locations. The Mercury echoes the beginning of Webb’s. They began selling Mercury models in 1946 and were able to obtain a ’49 Mercury from a loyal customer. 1949 Mercury. Photo Elaina John The Mercury/Must

COVID-19 Update

As of August 6, the Central Zone of Alberta is down to 224 active cases. The County of Vermilion River is up to three active cases. The Municipal District of Wainwright has a concerning spike in cases, as from July 30 to August 6, active cases in the MD of Wainwright have gone from 11 to 45. The Municipal District of Provost has one active case, Viking is down to 64 active cases, and Flagstaff County is down to six. As of August 6, there are no active cases to report in the County of Two Hills, the County of Minburn, the Municipal District of St Paul, or the Municipal District of Bonnyville. However, there are two active cases in Cold Lake. The total number of active cases in Alberta has

Climb Thru Time Museum

Robin Hunter by the old train car. Photo Sue Chikie The Climb Thru Time Museum is open for all to view the many settings. It is a renovated Grain Elevator in Paradise Valley located 50 km southwest of Lloydminster or 50 km northeast of Wainwright. It officially opened on July 24, 1995 and has a Tea and Dessert room but due to COVID-19 this part is closed, but the gift shop is still open. As you climb thru time the displays include just about anything you can think of from previous days gone by. Some of the many displays are artifacts and art depicting the start of agriculture in the area, for example there are nature displays, farm equipment, farm replicas, cattle displays, pig, chicken

Lakeland College Programming This Fall

Lakeland College Alumni Hall. Photo Elaina John Lakeland College is returning in the fall with a blended learning experience. Due to COVID-19, the college has revised occupancy loads and have various measures in place to ensure social distancing guidelines are met. Classrooms will have fewer students with desks and work areas spaced out according to the six-foot government recommendation, with plexiglass barriers directional guides in high traffic areas. As well, Lakeland College will have a campus-wide mask wearing requirement. Despite lower occupancies in physical classrooms, Lakeland College will be able to take on the same amount of students in each class as usual. Students will be on

Firefighting Programming At Lakeland College

Firefighting program scheduling at Lakeland College has looked a little different this year. The basic firefighting program began in March, and two weeks into the program, COVID-19 changed everything. Swiftly, the college set up an online learning environment for fire school students, but the program was still eventually cancelled, as was the various other emergency services programs Lakeland College typically runs throughout the summer. With things in the province slowly reopening, Lakeland College was able to resume emergency services programs. On July 20, the college ran a week-long fire extinguisher maintenance program, and on July 27, were able to begin their usual 12 week firefighte

Paradise Valley Gymkhana

Youth barrel racing. Photo Elaina John 3 Cities Fairgrounds in Paradise Valley hosted a Gymkhana event on July 28. Many participants in the gymkhana events were returning from Paradise Valley’s Horse Camp, which took place from July 14 to July 16. The gymkhana events were for all ages, divided into the groups: peewee (nine and under), youth (10-14), and intermediate (14-17). Adults were able to participate in all open events. In total, there were approximately 40 participants. “That’s a pretty sweet turnout,” said Tammy Hampel, a member of the Paradise Valley Light Horse Committee. The gymkhana activities consisted of barrel racing, pole bending, key hole, egg and spoon race, as well as s

COVID-19 Update

COVID-19 cases in Central Alberta continue to climb. Central Alberta has identified 173 new cases from July 24-30, leaving the region at a total of 254 active cases. As of July 30, there are no longer any active cases in the County of Vermilion River, the Municipal District of Bonnyville, or the County of St. Paul. However, the Municipal District of Wainwright is now up to 11 active cases and sadly one death. Flagstaff County is up to seven active cases, there are seven active cases in Camrose and County, and 69 cases in Viking. Cases in the County of Minburn have gone down to one and cases in the County of Two Hills have gone down to two. In total, Alberta sits at a total of 1386 active

McDonald's Official Land Purchased, Construction Postponed

Land sold to McDonald's. Photo submitted At the Town Council Meeting on July 14, it was officially announced that the McDonald’s franchise purchased an acre of land from the Town of Vermilion on 42 Avenue. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, the franchise had to postpone the construction of the McDonald’s, and hopes to break ground in the spring. Construction is expected to take about 16 weeks not including time for training, which would set the opening date to approximately late summer or fall of 2021. “We are very excited to be working with McDonald’s Canada on a build for spring of 2021 in Vermilion. Once built, it’s visibility from Yellowhead Highway 16 will be an added draw to pulling inc

Local Artist Eugene Kopeck

Eugene Kopeck. Photo Elaina John “Colour has sound to it, and that sound has a healing effect,” local artist Eugene Kopeck muses. Kopeck began his artistic endeavours in grade school, but slowly distanced himself from the craft as he began pursuing a career and family life. He became a pilot and toured the Antarctic for Ray Nelson of Nelson Lumber in Lloydminster. He resided in Lloydmister for 25 years, until moving to Vermilion five years ago. “Vermilion was my lucky last choice,” Kopeck comments, “It’s a friendly atmosphere. You get to know people far easier here than in Lloyd.” Kopeck returned to his artistic endeavours in recent years after his friends and acquaintances started to not

Mannville Riverview Golf

The golfing season is looking abundant for Mannville Golf course this year. “We’re having a great year, the course is selling itself,” said golf course manager Kent Staden. Staden credits COVID-19 for the busy season, as golfing is a sport that is easy to do while social distancing. Riverview’s campgrounds have also been busy, as Staden reports that they have been sold out since the May long weekend. #Summeractivities #MannvilleGolfCourse #Golfing #Golfseason

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