A record crowd of almost 300 people attended the 5th annual Carhartts & Caviar welding showcase and auction at the Swift Current campus of Great Plains College, March 2. The live auction featured 13 unique metal art pieces created by welding students, local companies and an alumnus of the welding program. The theme of this year's auction was “Old becomes New” and the items in the live auction included a retro gas pump, a stand up clock inspired by London's Big Ben, a table made from an old Ford truck tailgate, a retro couch made from the front end of a 1951 Dodge Coronet and a television stand made from the back end of a 1951 Dodge Coronet. Auctioneer Gordie Cameron was back for the fifth year to do the live auction of unique metal art pieces. The live auction included a “Junk Yard Wars” portion, when two items made by students as part of an in-class competition were auctioned by two students who acted as guest auctioneers. The live auction raised $21,225 and the highest bid of $4,100 was made on the 1951 Dodge Coronet retro couch. Proceeds from the event will be used to provide scholarships to students and to buy new equipment for the welding certificate program.
The Millar Edge men's basketball team won the Battle of the Southwest against the Great Plains College SunDogs, March 1. The game was played at the Millar College of the Bible in Pambrun. The SunDogs had a two-point lead (22-20) after the first quarter, but the Edge drew ahead during the next quarter to have a 48-36 lead at halftime. The Millar Edge continued to lead the game during the second half and the final score was 98-76.
A celebration of the blues took place at the annual StirCrazy Blues Concert in Swift Current, Feb. 25. The concert at the Lyric Theatre was part of the 2016-17 Blenders concert series and featured the 24th Street Wailers, a five-member band from Toronto that received a 2015 Juno nomination for blues album of the year. Their music and on-stage showmanship are inspired by 1940's and 1950's rhythm and blues that influenced rock and roll. Their Swift Current performance was their first Canadian tour stop on their current North American tour.
Former Saskatchewan Roughriders quarterback Henry Burris was the guest speaker at the 2017 Swift Current 57's Baseball Club Field of Dreams dinner at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall in Swift Current, Feb. 25. He spoke about the ups and downs of his career, which included three Grey Cup championships with two different teams, the Calgary Stampeders in 1998 and 2008, and with the Ottawa Redblacks in 2016. Burris announced his retirement from professional football in January 2017. He spoke about the importance of building strong communities that support young people and he expressed appreciation for the efforts of the Swift Current 57's to help young men to make their dreams come true. The event was sold out and included live and silent auctions. Field of Dreams has been an important fundraiser for the baseball team during the past 18 years. The team has a new name and colours after a recent rebranding process, and funds raised from this year's event will be used to buy uniforms for the upcoming season.
The Swift Current Curling Club hosted the 2017 Senior Men's and Women's Provincial Championships, Feb. 22-26. Eight teams participated in each event and a local team, skipped by Max Kirkpatrick, competed in the men's event. He was in second place after the seven-game round robin with only two losses, but Kirkpatrick was eliminated in the semi-final by Saskatoon's Brian Humble of the Sutherland Curling Club. Kirkpatrick had a 3-2 lead after six ends, but four points in the 7th end gave Humble the 6-3 win. The winner of the men's final was Darrell McKee of Saskatoon's Nutana Curling Club, who scored a single point during the final end to win 3-2. In the senior women's final the defending champion Sherry Anderson of Nutana Curling Club defeated Moose Jaw's Lorraine Arguin with a final score of 8-4. McKee and Anderson will represent Saskatchewan at the 2017 Senior Men's and Women's Canadian Championships in Fredericton, New Brunswick, March 20-25. Pictured is the Swift Current team of Max Kirkpatrick during a game against the rink of Kelvington's Brent Franko, Feb. 23. The members of Kirkpatrick's team are third Wayne Charteris, second Mitch Minken and lead Greg Hannay.
Award-winning interdisciplinary artist Joseph Naytowhow shared his music and stories about his own life with people during an aboriginal storytelling event at the Swift Current Branch Library, Feb. 22. He also spoke at similar storytelling events at Ponteix Library on Feb. 23 and at the Nekaneet First Nation, Feb. 24. These events happened as part of the celebration of Saskatchewan Aboriginal Storytelling Month in the province during the month of February. It was the 14th year that Saskatchewan Aboriginal Storytelling Month took place to promote the rich oral history and cultural traditions of First Nations and Métis people. The celebrations at venues across the province were coordinated by the Library Services for Saskatchewan Aboriginal Peoples committee. Naytowhow will make an appearance at two other events in southwest Saskatchewan during March. He will be in Swift Current for the Lyric Theatre's Write Out Loud event on March 15 and he will participate in World Storytelling Day in Grasslands at the Prairie Community Centre in Val Marie, March 18. These events will start at 7 p.m. and in both instances he will share the stage with Val Marie based writer, storyteller and performer Madonna Hamel.