The Royal Canadian Legion Branch #56 Swift Current held a parade and ceremony on April 9 to commemorate the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which took place 100 years ago in Europe during the First World War. More than 3,500 Canadians were killed during the battle in 1917, which lasted from April 9 to 12. The Canadian victory is historically significant because it was the first time that all four Canadian divisions were together in a single battle, which contributed to a feeling of national unity. Thirty members of the 209th Battallion, which was established in Swift Current in February 2016 with recruits from southwest Saskatchewan, were killed in action at Vimy Ridge. Members of 605 Royal Canadian Air Cadet Tarry Squadron and 259 Royal Canadian Sea Cadet Corps Drylander participated in the commemoration ceremony at the cenotaph in Memorial Park. Salvation Army Major Don Grad did the scripture reading from Psalm 23. Dave Boucher, the president of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch #56 Swift Current, and Petty Officer First Class Theo Lautsch of the  259 Drylander Royal Canadian Sea Cadet Corps placed a wreath at the cenotaph.

 

Thousands of Saskatchewan residents attended rallies across the province on April 7 to express their concerns over major funding cuts to the provincial library system. In Swift Current over 200 people participated in the rally outside the office of local MLA and Premier Brad Wall during the noon hour. Close to 100 people gathered at the Swift Current Branch Library and walked to the central downtown area, where they joined other people in front of Premier Wall’s office. A number of speakers shared their concerns about the library budget cuts with the crowd. After the speeches the rally participants opened their books and read. A distinctive feature of the Swift Current rally was the presence of a donkey and therapy dog. The donkey Shimmer has been a regular part of the Swift Current Branch Library’s summer reading club activities during the past two years. The therapy dog Talla comes to the library a few times every month for the Reading to a Dog event, which makes it easier for children to practice their reading skills.

 

The 40th annual Swift Current Hobby, Craft and Gun Spring Show took place in the Stockade at Kinetic Exhibition Park, April 1 and 2. The event was well attended and according to show organizer Henry Banman there were around 2,100 visitors during the weekend. There were over 75 exhibitors and the 235 tables were filled with a variety of merchandise. There was a large selection of firearms and ammunition as well as coins, stamps, antiques, leather, glassware and various other collectables for sale. Banman has also organized a fall show for the past nine years and the 10th annual fall show on Nov. 4 and 5 will therefore be of special significance, as it will be the 50th hobby, craft and gun show in Swift Current since 1977.

 

The Swift Current Broncos won the final game in the best-of-seven playoff series against the Moose Jaw Warriors in Moose Jaw, April 3. The 3-2 victory gave the Broncos their first playoff round win since 2008. They will take on the Regina Pats in the second round of the playoffs. The Pats already concluded their series against the Calgary Hitmen on March 30, when the Regina team won their fourth game in a row. The Broncos had an opportunity to clinch the series in Swift Current on April 1, as the team had a 3-2 series lead after five games, but the Warriors forced the seventh game with a 3-2 win. The Broncos will travel to Regina for the first two games against the Pats on April 6 and 7, and the next two game will be in Swift Current on April 10 and 11. Pictured are action from the game between the Broncos and Warriors at the Innovation Credit Union i-plex in Swift Current, April 1.

 

The 88th annual Swift Current & District Music Festival Xtravaganza took place at the St. Olaf Lutheran Church, March 31. The festival provides an opportunity for amateur musicians to perform and showcase their talent. During March the participants in the different categories were evaluated at adjudicated sessions and the festival concluded with the Xtravaganza, where award presentations were made to the category winners and a number of the winners performed to the audience. The following festival competitors received recommendations to participate in the finals for the provincial competition: Sarah Elezaby (vocal solo), Jesse Koethler (musical theatre), Anthony Merkel (brass solo), Presley Reddekopp (piano), Dawnella Rude (musical theatre), Prairie Spirit Choir (choral) and Swift Current Comprehensive High School Chamber Singers (choral).

 

The U15 Junior SunDogs girls team won silver at their home tournament, which took place at the Swift Current Comprehensive High School from March 25 to 26. Eight volleyball teams participated in the tournament. The Junior SunDogs finished in fourth place after the round robin with four wins and three losses. The home team won the quarter and semi-final matches in two-set games to play for gold in the final against the Battlefords Volleyball Club (BVC) Impact. The Junior SunDogs won the first set 25-18, but the BVC Impact won the next two sets (27-25 and 15-6) to place first with the SunDogs in second spot.

 
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