Southwest Saskatchewan had a remarkable second decade of the millennium.
The headlines in the Southwest Booster from January 2010 to December 2019 captured many of these significant milestones and achievements in communities across the Southwest.
The world came calling to Swift Current’s doorstep three times, with the city hosting the World Women’s Curling Championships in both 2010 and 2016, and most recently this past month Swift Current was a co-host of the 2019 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge.
In the political arena, the landscape changed significantly over the past 10 years. Swift Current’s Brad Wall stepped down as Saskatchewan’s 14th premier in 2018 after 11 years at the helm of the province. Cypress Hills Grasslands MP David Anderson resigned earlier this year after having been elected on six different times during a political career that spanned from 2000 to 2019.
In the City of Swift Current, the business community enjoyed building permit total records in both 2012 ($82.3 million) and 2015 ($87 million), while also enjoying a solid 2014 ($66 million).
An amazing individual achievement occurred back on July 22, 2014, when Meghan Chisholm endured 2.5 metre waves during an exhausting 14 hour plus effort to swim the English Channel, becoming the first Saskatchewan resident to accomplish that feat.
However the newsmaker of the decade was clearly Sheldon Kennedy, who brought both hope and healing to many.
In January 2016 Kennedy was on hand to help Swift Current launch the Safe Places Initiative, and shared his own personal journey with the community in the gripping documentary Swift Current.
Kennedy also made headlines in the community during February 2012 when he received a 2012 Scotiabank Humanitarian Awards for Lifetime Achievement. Sheldon Kennedy Day was proclaimed on February 18, 2012. He was named to the Order of Canada in 2015. He received one additional headline honour back on February 7 when an outdoor rink was named in his honour during the 2019 Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada weekend.
Thompson joins Noble Irwin Foundation
Clay Thompson joined the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation as Executive Director. The Foundation saluted retiring Executive Director Lyn Johnson for her amazing efforts over the past 10 years.
Amazing celebration greets Olympic Torch
A loud roar of Canadian pride rang out across Kinetic Park when Katie Durant ignited the Community Celebration Cauldron in Swift Current. With crowd estimates as high as 5,000, Southwest Saskatchewan put their unique stamp on the torch relay during an evening celebration, capping the 73rd day of the Torch Relay’s 106-day journey to Vancouver.
Pilon named 14th Swift Current Fire Chief
Denis Pilon was selected to serve as Swift Current’s new Fire Chief. Pilon had served as Acting Fire Chief for the past year and a half, previously serving a 15-year stint at the Fire Chief in Weyburn.
Local businesses recognized
The SCBEX awards recognized Wallace Construction as Business of the Year, Cecile Blanke as Citizen of the Year Southwest, and Sandy Larson as Citizen of the Year.
Cypress Hills rainfall washes out Trans-Canada Highway
When the skies above the Cypress Hills opened up, there was nowhere for the massive amounts of rainfall to go except to flood low lying areas where flooding has rarely occurred. The powerful waters destroyed a portion of the Trans-Canada Highway, while also damaging Highways #21 and #271.
CT scan results reviewed
Over 7,500 CT scan images were reviewed in response to discrepancies in interpretations of diagnosis images generated by a radiologist in the Cypress Health Region.
Noble stepping down as Swift Current CAO
Matt Noble stepped down as the City of Swift Current Chief Administrative Officer to assume a similar position with the City of Merritt.
Non-resident rate added to Swift Current Recreation and Park facilities
Swift Current City Council unanimously approved a non-resident user rate for out of city groups, teams and individuals participating in events hosted at a series of city facilities. Non-resident participants will face higher facility rental rates plus a $50 per participant annual fee.
Safety improved during interchange upgrade project
The $6.5 million Highway #1 and #4 upgraded interchange project was completed, resulting in improvements to the alignment of the service roads and off ramps.
James sought on Canada wide warrant
The Winnipeg Police Service issued a Canada Wide Warrant for Graham James, former head coach and general manager of the Swift Current Broncos from 1986 to 1994, following new charges in an investigation into complaints of historic sexual assaults.
Highway #32 campaign results in a smooth ride
A two-year construction project was completed between Shackleton and Prelate, ending Highway #32s reputation as the worst highway in the Southwest.
The Centre opens
The grand opening of The Centre on November 19, 2010 featured a ribbon cutting by Jim McGee, Sally Wiens and participants representing the Soup Kitchen, Fresh Start education component, the Community Youth Initiative and the Girls on the Move program.
Highway #1 re-opens fully
A portion of the TransCanada Highway west of Maple Creek that was washed away during a heavy rain back on June 18 was re-opened to four-lane traffic.
Cypress beginning immediate re-evaluation of additional CT scans
An expanded review of CT scans is being performed in the Cypress Health Region after an expanded sampling of images was conducted. Based on random sampling of 449 exams drawn from CT scans performed from January 2005 to November 2007, 13.1 per cent were shown to have a clinically significant variance rate. Thus a more comprehensive review of CT scan examinations for the time period from Oct. 2004 to Dec. 2007 is required
Vachon takes over as Cypress Health Region’s permanent CEO
After an eight month stint as the Action CEO of the Cypress Health Region, Beth Vachon has been officially appointed as the Chief Executive Officer for the Health Region.
Wall inducted into SCCHS Alumni Wall of Honour
Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall joined an exclusive group when he was inducted into the Swift Current Comprehensive High School’s Alumni Wall of Honour. Premier Wall joins award winning journalist Eric Malling and former Saskatchewan Lieutenant Governor Lynda Haverstock are the current standout alumni.
2011 Humanitarian Awards and EMS Gala a celebration of service and collaboration
Outstanding humanitarian service, locally and abroad, were the focus of a special evening at the Sky Centre on Feb. 18. In attendance were His Honour Dr. Gordon L. Barnhart, Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, Humanitarian Service award honourees Art Wallman and Dr. Lawrence Reimer, and representatives of district EMS, Swift Current Fire Department and RCMP, all of whom have dedicated their lives to serving the lives of others beyond measure.
Saskatchewan physicians ratify contract agreement, includes 11-per-cent fee increase
The province’s nearly 2,000 practicing physicians have overwhelmingly voted in favour of the four-year contract agreement that was first presented January 25, 2011.
Fledgling Southwest Country Music Association hosts SCMAs
The newly-launched Southwest Country Music Association hosted this year’s 22nd annual SCMA Awards. Southwest Chapter founder Glenna Switzer was awarded Country Music Person of the Year.
Multi-million redevelopment well underway at Wheatland Mall
A quartet of stores have moved into new locations as part of a $4 million redevelopment plan at the Wheatland Mall. Coles, SaskTel, Marlin Travel and Barker’s Jewelry have relocated into the new premises as part of the ongoing renovation. The construction focus now shifts to development of an 18,900 square foot store for Giant Tiger and a 5,440 square foot location for Bulk Barn.
MP Anderson earns Southwest record fifth federal mandate
Incumbent MP David Anderson was reelected in the Cypress Hills-Grasslands constituency on a night when Stephen Harper earned his first majority mandate for the Conservative Party. Anderson became the first Southwest federal politician to earn five consecutive mandates to serve in Ottawa.
Ceremony held to unveil $13.5 million improvement at Great Plains College
A celebration ceremony was hosted on May 27 to unveil the completion of the $13.5 million renovation and expansion project at Great Plains College Swift Current campus. The project was an initiative of the Knowledge Infrastructure Program, with the province funding $7.35 million for the project and the federal government contributing $6.15 million towards the project announced in 2009.
City and RM reach agreement on 30-year water deal
The City of Swift Current and the RM of Swift Current have resolved their rural pipeline dispute by approving a 30-year agreement where the city will distribute water to RM customers.
Crescent Point Wickenheiser Centre celebrates grand opening in Shaunavon
The grand opening of the Crescent Point Wickenheiser Centre in Shauanvon brought the region together on July 15 and 16 to celebrate the culmination of more than 20 years of dreaming and a decade of intensive planning and fundraising.
Sask politicians salute Layton
The flags at the Saskatchewan Legislature are flying at half staff as Saskatchewan residents join with Canadians from coast to coast in mourning the loss of federal NDP Leader Jack Layton, who dies August 22, 2011 at the age of 61 following a battle with cancer.
Council approves $250,000 to support Lyric Theatre
Swift Current City Council has approved a request from the Southwest Cultural Development Group for $250,000 in capital investment to help ensure that Swift Current’s cultural icon, the Lyric Theatre, could benefit from $500,000 in federal funding as part of a million dollar makeover of the building’s structure and exterior in time for its 100th anniversary in 2012.
Saskatchewan Party returns in landslide
Premier Brad Wall and the Saskatchewan Party earned a second straight term in leading the province after receiving an overwhelming mandate from voters.
Memorial Drive added in Swift Current
The six-kilometre stretch of Highway #4 that runs through Swift Current will now be known as Memorial Drive in recognition of the sacrifice and service of Canada’s military personnel.
Tylosaur on permanent display at Swift Current Museum
The replica fossil of a 65 million year old reptile related to modern day lizards has found a permanent home at the Swift Current Museum, a short distance from its 1994 discovery site.
City of Swift Current sets debt limit at $85 million
With their existing debt limit expiring December 31 of 2011, the City of Swift Current has approved a request for a new debt limit of $85 million.
Southwest basked in warmth to start 2012
Southwest Saskatchewan enjoyed a reprieve from winter and was basking in record breaking warm weather to start 2012.
The first nine days of January boasted record temperatures across the province. Maple Creek reached a daytime high of 16.4 Celsius on Jan. 4.
Lyric facelift begins in April
The Living Legacy CD launch party at the Lyric Theatre on Jan. 28 was also the perfect time to announce updates on the Lyric’s renovations.
Kennedy and Sigurdson saluted for Humanitarian efforts
Sheldon Kennedy had a heroes homecoming at the 2012 Scotiabank Humanitarian Awards for Lifetime Achievement gala presented by the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation. Kennedy and Esther Sigurdson were this year’s recipients of the prestigious second annual awards before a sold out crowd at the Sky Centre on Feb. 17.
Kennedy also dropped the ceremonial first puck at the Feb. 18 game against the visiting Saskatoon Blades during Sheldon Kennedy Day which was proclaimed by Swift Current City Council.
Former Broncos’ head coach gets two years for sexual abuse of two former players
Disgraced former Swift Current Broncos head coach Graham James was handed a two year prison term from a Winnipeg judge as a sentence for his sexual abuse of two formers players in the 1980s and 1990s.
James had earlier pled guilty to repeatedly sexually assaulting former NHLer Theo Fleury and Bronco standout Todd Holt while he coached the players, with his sentence handed down in a Winnipeg court on March 20.
Nursing degree program announced for Great Plains College
Great Plains College will be offering a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program after SIAST and the University of Regina signed a letter of intent to deliver the program in Swift Current.
Bequest to Dr. Noble Irwin Foundation will fund covered entrance to Cypress Regional Hospital
The Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation and the Cypress Regional Hospital announced on June 1 that the executors for the estate of Jessie Alberta Grant, a former employee of Health Region #1, have decided that a covered walkway for the Cypress Regional Hospital enteric would be a suitable memorial tribute that will enhance the comfort and safety for all who use the facility.
Swift Current being considered for gas turbine electrical generation project
SaskPower hosted an Open House in Swift Current on June 20 to further explore the potential of a new natural gas electrical generation project being constructed near Swift Current. The City is one of four locations being considered as a site for a Combined Cycle Gas Turbine.
West End Grocery destroyed in July 25 blaze
The Swift Current Fire Department has determined the early morning fire which destroyed the West End Grocery on July 25 was accidental.
“Grain Marketing Freedom Day” championed by Prime Minister Harper in Kindersley
Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, and Cypress Hills-Grasslands MP David Anderson welcomed the dawn of a new era in grain marketing freedom for Western Canada farmers at the family farm of the late pro-marketing freedom advocate Art Waldie near Kindersley on August 1. A crowd of producers gathered from across the prairies to mark the end of the 40-year monopoly of the Canadian Wheat Board.
Tender approval from Ministry launches construction of Swift Current’s joint school
Westbridge Construction Ltd. has been officially approved as the company that will build Swift Current’s new joint school for the Holy Trinity Catholic School Division and the Chinook School Division, with he contractor expected to be on site within the next few weeks. Site preparation is well underway for Ecole Centennial School and All Saints Catholic School.
Lt. Col. Iver Clifton Recreation Centre officially dedicated
Fittingly, the former Swift Current Armouries has been officially renamed the Lieutenant Colonel Iver Clifton Centre in recognition of Clifton, who served as the last Commanding Officer of Swift Current’s 14th Canadian Hussars.
Pioneer Co-op officially re-opened Swift Current flagship location
An official ribbon cutting ceremony was held on November 8 to reopen the anchor store of the Wheatland Mall, including the Co-op Home Centre and other areas of the store that have undergone extensive renovations since the end of January 2012.
Compensation sole focus of boundary commission hearing
The Saskatchewan Municipal Boards Municipal Boundary Committee hearing regarding the City of Swift Current’s annexation request had a sole focus on compensation during a three hour public hearing hosted on November 29.
Swift Current sets all-time building permit record before end of 2012
The City of Swift Current had already enjoyed an all-time record year in building permit totals, with a full month remaining in 2012. Swift Current has recorded a record $82.3 million in building permits during the first 11 months of 2012, a total which is 16 per cent higher than the previous record year of 2007 where $71 million in building permit activity was recorded.
The year 2013 was a memorable year, with the phasing out of the penny at the cash register and the introduction of 10 digit dialing for all Saskatchewan residents in May.
Batco Manufacturing expanding into Urban Forest Recyclers facility
Batch Manufacturing will be relocating into the current Urban Forest Recylers Inc. facility in order to more than triple Batco’s current manufacturing space. Ag. Growth International agreed to acquire the 114,000 square foot UFR facility, substantially expanding Batco Manufacturing from their former 33,500 square foot location.
City of Swift Current annexation approved at 15-time compensation
The Saskatchewan Municipal Board’s Municipal Boundary Committee has ruled in favour of the City of Swift Currents annexation application. In the Municipal Boundary Committee’s 40-page ruling they determined the City will pay the RM of Swift Current 15-times the annual tax loss rate for the annexed land over a seven year period. The total amount paid for the property will be approximately $3.17 million, with an annual payment of just over $450,000.
STC cut announced
The Saskatchewan Transportation Company is planning to cut their only bus route servicing a wide stretch of the Southwest effective May 18.
The provincial government announced they were supporting a cost-cutting move by STC which will result in the elimination of the Eastend to Swift Current and Eastend to Mossbank bus routes.
While counted as a single route, the service operates on Tuesdays and Thursdays from Eastend through Shaunavon and into Swift Current, while on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays it makes the Highway #13 run from Eastend to Mossbank and back.
Royal Saskatchewan Museum to operate T.rex Discovery Centre
An agreement in principle has been reached with the Board of Directors of Eastend’s T.rex Discovery Centre Inc. that will see the Royal Saskatchewan Museum (RSM) assume the on-going operation of the centre this spring.
All Weather Track funding approved
The City of Swift Current and the Chinook School Division have each approved shared funding to construct the first all weather eight-lane track in southwest Saskatchewan, based on tenders that were solicited in January 2013.
The Chinook School Division approved their contribution of $645,355 plus taxes at their Feb. 11 board meeting, subject to City Council’s formal approval. The total cost of the track and field project to be cost shared is $1,290,710, and will see the six-lane dirt track replaced by an eight lane all-weather synthetic surface track.
First rural Simulation Training Centre in province officially opens in Swift Current
Another dream of Swift Current’s Dr. Tara Lee was realized April 19 when the Cypress Health Region officially opened the Lee/Irwin Simulation Training Centre and Cenovus Energy Inc. Control Room at the Cypress Regional Hospital. The Centre will build and maintain the skills of health professionals in the use of new equipment and practice techniques on simulated patients.
Innovation Credit Union to close six branches in the Southwest
Following a lengthy evaluation, Innovation Credit Union has made a decision to close their branch locations in Climax, Coderre, Hazlet, Pennant, Sceptre, and Shamrock effective October 1.
Dialysis funding announced in Swift Current
More dialysis patients will be receiving service at the Cypress Regional Hospital following Premier Brad Wall’s announcement of increased funding to double the number of patients that can be accommodated in Swift Current.
Salvation Army celebrates 100 years in Swift Current
A number of century old traditions were used to help the Salvation Army recognize their 100th anniversary in Swift Current during a three-day celebration this past weekend.
Swift Current holds first Ride For Dad
A morning drizzle was of little concern for the close to 150 motorcyclists who proudly rode across the Southwest in support of Swift current’s inaugural Telus Motorcycle Ride for Dad.
Shaunavon hosts fantastic centennial celebration
A one-in-a-century celebration was hosted in Shaunavon over the weekend when thousands of people helped the community celebrate their centennial. Spread out over four days, the July 18 to 21 centennial celebration fittingly reflected the them of “100 years, Our Home, Our Future.”
Metis Veterans Monument unveiled at Lac Pelletier
The long overdue recognition of the efforts of Metis Veterans from the Lac Pelletier valley was finally completed with the unveiling of a Metis Veterans Monument at Lac Pelletier Regional Park. The names of 16 Metis Veterans who served during World War I, World War II and the Korean War are displayed on the newly constructed cenotaph, marking one of the few monuments to the service of Metis veterans.
Chaplin celebrates grand opening of new water treatment plant
The Village of Chaplin formally unveiled their $1.3 million water treatment plant, marking the opening of a facility that would not be a reality without a funding partnership between three levels of government.
Legion trying to preserve future with fund-raising effort
The Royal Canadian Legion Branch #56 in Swift Current is attempting to raise $500,000 in order to complete major repairs to their building and preserve the future of the Legion in the city.
Nursing students at Great Plains College begin classes
The inaugural class of eight students in the Saskatchewan Collaborative Bachelor of Science in Nursing (SCBScN) Program offered through the Great Plains College campus in Swift Current have begun the journey to become the first Saskatchewan students outside of Regina and Saskatoon to earn this during degree.
Amisha Hockridge selected as 2013 Saskatchewan Champion Child
Swift Current’s Amisha Hockridge was announced as the 2013 Champion Child for the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Saskatchewan.
MP receives parliamentary secretary appointment
Cypress Hills Grasslands MP David Anderson has been appointed to serve as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs during a series of parliamentary changes announced on Sept. 10.
CT scanner funding completion an important goal for Foundation
The Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation continues to draw closer to completing funding for the new $1.6 million Computer Tomography (CT) scanner which is now in use at the Cypress Regional Hospital.
Tootoosis leaving Living Sky Casino for SIGA position
Lionel Tootoosis has been appointed as the Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority’s new Senior Vice President of Operations after serving as the General Manager of the Living Sky Casino since it opened in December 2008.
Chinook Board votes to close Ashley Park School
The Chinook School Division Board of Education voted by an 8-2 margin to close Ashley Park School at the end of the 214-2015 school year. The closure will pave the way for O.M. Irwin School and Central School to transition into K to 8 schools.
Swift Current celebrates Centennial Day in gala fashion
An estimated crowd of 3,000 people helped the City of Swift Current celebrate turing 100 years old in style on January 15.
Labour challenges highlighted during Kenney visit
Concerns over attracting qualified labour to the Southwest was the focal point of federal cabinet minister MP Jason Kenney’s visit to Swift Current. Kenny, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister of Multiculturalism, toured Rem Enterprises and the Saskatchewan Abilities Council Swift Current Branch before hosting a business roundtable in the afternoon.
Council proposing to move forward with Capital Project Levy
Swift Current City Council is proposing a new Capital Reserve Levy, with a series of six per cent increases proposed over a five year period in order to help the city generate funds for future capital expenditures. The new funding model was an attempt to eliminate the current tax breaks afforded by utilizing subsidies from the Light and Power surplus.
Midnight Roses names SCMA Rising Stars
The Midnight Roses walked away with the prestigious Rising Star Award at the 2014 Saskatchewan Country Music Association awards weekend. The quartet of Myshel Pajuaar, Liza Holder, Paula McGuigan and Eliza Doyle captured their first SCMA award, while also being nominated in the Group of the year category and the Roots Album of the Year category.
Continuing Care Assistant pilot project deemed a success
The Cypress Health Region is calling their Continuing Care Assistant program a success after eight of their employees received diplomas.
Grass fire too close for comfort
RM of Swift Current and City of Swift Current Fire Departments were kept busy battling a large grass fire which came perilously close to residential and institutional buildings in the area. The first swept down the valley north of the Cypress Regional Hospital, and threatened the hospital, the two schools under constriction, and a residential area all north of Highway #4.
Crozier inducted to SCCHS Alumni Wall of Honour
Lorna Crozier had a day of memories and emotions on May 1 when she was inducted to the Swift Current Comprehensive High School’s Wall of Honour. As one of Canada’s most renown poets, Crozier has earned multiple awards and accolades over a prolific writing career. In 2011 she was selected to receive the Order of Canada.
Ag Growth International officially opens manufacturing facility
It was a big day for local industry as Batco Manufacturing, REM and Ag Growth International (AGI) officially opened their new Swift Current based manufacturing facility on June 17.
Bernie Brown art featured on new Royal Canadian Mint coins
Artwork created by former Swift Current resident Bernie Brown is featured on a pair of recently released collectable coins from the Royal Canadian Mint.
Brown, who moved from Swift Current to Okotoks in 1993, has two of his drawings featured on $10 and $25 silver coins in the Mint’s “O Canada” collection.
Chisholm achieves dream of swimming English Channel
Swift Current’s Meghan Chisholm completed her English Channel swim on July 22, reaching the shores of France between the tiny oceanside villages of Ambleteuse and Audresselles just after 1:30 p.m. to mark the completion of an over 14 hour swim.
Chisholm began her solo swim at approximately 6:15 a.m. and completed her marathon effort by approximately 8:40 p.m. to become the first Saskatchewan resident to complete an English Channel swim.
Strong winds cause derailment east of Waldeck
Canadian Pacific Railway had a major clean-up task this past wee when over 30 cars derailed just east of Waldeck on August 28 after strong winds caused the rail cars to leave the track.
Centennial and All Saints unveil new schools
Swift Current’s first new school project since 1967 opened at the start of the 2014-2015 school year, with the joint use school facility getting initial rave reviews from both students and teachers.
Wong Guy Shoe Shop re-opening like stepping into a time capsule
After being shuttered for over three decades, the Wong Guy Shoe Shop in Gull Lake was re-opened to the general public. People had a chance to walk through the store and view the building which is essentially a time capsule of the way it was left in 1979.
New schools receive lasting legacy from Prince Edward
A pair of Paper Birch trees will stand as a lasting legacy of Prince Edward’s whirlwind three hour tour through Swift Current on September 19.
Sod officially turned for $107 million Long Term Care Centre in Swift Current
A historic sod turning was hosted in Swift Current when the official ground breaking for Swift Current’s new Long Term Care Centre was held.
The P3 construction project, Saskatchewan’s first healthcare facility built via a public private partnership, will boast a $108 million price tag over the lifespan of the design-build-finance-maintain contract.
Lyric Theatre reaches first restoration milestone
The inaugural milestone in restoring the Lyric Theatre to its former grandeur was celebrated during a reception on October 30 where supporters officially helped celebrate the conclusion of phase one of extensive building renovations.
First Nations Power Authority unveil solar project in Swift Current
A first-of-its-kind piece of solar technology has made its operating debut in Swift Current with the now on-line First Nations Power Authority project offsetting power consumption at the Home Inn and Suites.
Swift Current records third best building permit year in history
Swift Current had a near record year in building permit activity during 2014, with a remarkable $66 million in building permits, ranking as the third best in city history.
SaskTel unveils infiNET
SaskTel President and CEO Ron Styles was in Swift Current on January 16 to unveil details of the new infiNET Fibre Optic Network which is currently being installed across the city.
SWT Board of Directors approves plans for two building projects
South West Terminal Ltd. announced two large building projects that will continue the company’s growth in the Southwest. The first project, slated to begin in fall 2015, will be a new $2.3 million crop inputs facility along Highway #4 near Wymark. A slightly smaller project is aimed for Antelope, with a $1.8 million project to construct a new main office building.
Chamberlin enters guilty pleas on four sex related charges
The Southwest hockey coach facing a series of sexual assault changes in various locations in the Southwest entered a guilty plea on four sex offences in Swift Current Provincial Court on April 6.
Ryan Chamberlin, 39, will remain in police custody until May 6 when he will appear in court for sentencing. The assaults occurred between 1994 and 2015 in locations across the Southwest. Two of the incidents stemmed from Chamberlin’s tenure as a hockey and baseball coach with youths.
Swift Transit’s scheduled bus services now operational
The City of Swift Current’s partnership with the Saskatchewan Abilities Council for the Swift Transit service was put into motion of the first time on Easter Monday.
Gull Lake Community Van arrives after hitting fundraising target
March 31 was like Christmas for the hard working group of volunteers who successfully completed the fund-raising effort to provide a new community van. Members of the Gull Lake Van Inc. raised just over $83,000 to purchase a 2014 Crestline 15-seat van.
Mortgage burning celebration hosted at The Center
A culmination of five years of generous support by congregation members of East Side Church of God was celebrated on May 3 when a mortgage burning was held at The Center. In early 2010, a $300,000 mortgage was taken out on an 8,600 square foot location on 1st Ae. N.E. to pursue the church’s vision of launching a youth centre for Swift Current teens.
Graham James faces new sexual assault charges following complaint by a former Bronco player
Graham James, the disgraced former junior hockey coach who sexually assaulted players in the Western Hockey League for a number of years, is facing additional sexual assault charges after another former player has disclosed allegations of abuse to police. The charges stem from a complaint made to the Swift Current RCMP on September 27, 2013 by a former Swift Current Broncos player, alleging assaults by James between 1990 and 1991.
Bragg stepping down as Health Authority Chairperson
Tyler Bragg has tendered his resignation as Chairperson of the Cypress Regional Health Authority and will be stepping down from his position effective August 31. He had serves as Chairperson of the Health Authority since being appointed to the Board in April 2008.
Motkaluk resigns as CAO
Susan Motkaluk, who had served as Swift Current’s Chief Administrative Officer since January 2011, resigned her position to pursue other opportunities.
Marcus assumes CAO duties for City of Swift Current
The City of Swift Current has appointed Tim Marcus as the City’s new Chief Administrative Officer. He was named Director of Finance for the city back in 1999.
Major campaign underway to equip Swift Current Long Term Care facility
The Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation has launched an ambitious $8 million campaign to equip the new Swift Current Long Term Care facility. October 1 signalled the start of A Welcome Home Campaign, which will fully furnish the 210 long term care beds, plus 15 rooms for respite and palliative care which will comprise the new long term care facility.
Million dollar estate donation boosts A Welcome Home Campaign
A generous $1 million donation from the Albert “Bert” Miller estate has made a major impact on the fundraising efforts for the Swift Current Long Term Care facility.
Anderson re-elected a record sixth time as Cypress Hills Grasslands MP
David Anderson has been elected as Conservative Member of Parliament for a record sixth consecutive term in the Cypress Hills Grasslands Constituency. Federally, a red wave made its way across the country in the form of a Liberal majority government for leader Justin Trudeau.
Swift Current moves into top 10 of CFIB entrepreneurial cities
Swift Current has cracked the top 10 listings in the 2015 Entrepreneurial Communities report compiled by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. Swift Current sits tenth among 121 Canadian cities based on a ranking of 14 indicators.
Grand opening marks completion of Southwest Integrated Healthcare Facility in Maple Creek
It took six and a half years since the initial project announcement in February 2009 to officially open the Southwest Integrated Healthcare Facility in Maple Creek on October 23.
2015 a record-breaking year for construction in Swift Current
Swift Current has enjoyed a record-breaking construction year in 2015, with $87 million generated from 155 building permits. The totals as of November had already surpassed the previous record year in 2012.
Swift Current launches Safe Place Initiative
It was an emotional weekend of healing as Sheldon Kennedy and the community of Swift Current took a major step forward in helping make a difference in preventing sexual abuse. Kennedy was the guest of honour in the community for a documentary screening of Swift Current, a film which shares Kennedy’s story of abuse at the hands of Graham James, along with the struggles endured by a pair of more recent abuse victims.
Syrian Refugee family settling into Swift Current
The Family Day long weekend was a little extra special for Swift Current’s newest family, with the arrival of the city’s first Syrian refugee family on February 8. The Etmeh family arrived in Swift Current to complete the final leg of their refugee journey to Canada.
Chinook School Division turns 10
Education Minister Don Morgan helped the Chinook School Division take a bow in celebration of their 10th anniversary. Morgan attended a special decade celebration at the Chinook School Division office to recognize the achievements of the division following Saskatchewan’s amalgamation progress a decade ago.
SaskParty sweeps Southwest
The Saskatchewan Party maintained its stronghold on the Southwest corner of the province after the dust had settled after the provincial election. Longtime SaskParty MLAs, Wayne Elhard (Cypress Hills) and Yogi Hughebaert (Wood River) did not run and were easily replaced by Doug Steele (Cypress Hills, 79.51 per cent of the vote), and David Marit (Wood River, 76.01 per cent of the vote). Premier Brad Wall maintained his seat in Swift Current, winning his fifth term with 82.43 per cent of the vote.
McIntyre gifts $10 million to Children’s Hospital Foundation
Hazlet’s Eldon McIntyre made a $10 million donation to help build a children’s hospital in Saskatchewan during a fundraiser in Saskatoon.
Saskatchewan flag designer getting richly deserved recognition
Anthony Drake has had a whirlwind return to the province which has flown his flag design since 1969. Anthony ‘Tony’ Drake and his wife Joan have maintained a community-a-day tour pace to receive the deserving fanfare he missed out on over the past 47 years.
Construction underway at Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter
A sod-turning ceremony was held for the Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter – now officially called Dorie’s House.
2nd Ave. Overpass construction: Over time, not over budget
The City of Swift Current announced that the construction of the 2nd Ave. Overpass will not be completed by its original expected deadline of August 19. The bridge, which has been closed since May 2, will not re-open until the middle of September.
Colter Wall’s meteoric rise continues
Colter Wall’s sound continues to attract attention in new and impressive ways. On August 12, the film Hell or Highwater opened across North America, with the movie and the soundtrack including his original song Sleeping on the Blacktop.
Wernicke wins $60 million lottery prize on August 12 Lotto Max draw
Proving that lucky lottery lightning can strike anywhere, Mary Wernicke from Neville is $60 million richer after winning the August 12 Lotto Max draw. She purchased the winning $5 quick pick ticket from the Swift Current Pharmasave.
SPARC receives $35 million in funding for upgrade
With construction fully underway, the federal government has confirmed $35.3 million for new laboratory space and renovated offices at the Semiarid Prairie Agricultural Research Centre in Swift Current.
Maverick School opens permanent home
September 26 was a monumental day for Maverick High School, with the alternative High School formally opening in its new location. Running for over 15 years out of a rented space on the corner of Chaplin St. and 4th Ave. N.W., the new school opened this fall in a newly renovated/constructed space at the former Kinsmen School site on Swift Current’s south side.
Prairie Pioneer Kiwanis disbanding after 37 years
After 37 years of services in Swift Current and surrounding communities, the Prairie Pioneer Kiwanis Club has disbanded as of September 30, 2016. The group merged with the Swift Current Kiwanis Club.
Snowbirds show precision as Air Show headline performers
The precision and talent of the Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds was on display during the Swift Current Airshow on September 28.
Budd and Schafer wrap up their time on Swift Current City Council
Gord Budd and Jerrod Schafer, who were first elected to Swift Current City Council in 2003, sat through their final council meeting. Budd wrapped up his fourth term as a Councillor, while Schafer sat for two terms as Councillor before spending the last two terms as Mayor.
Perrault elected new Swift Current Mayor
Former Councillor Denis Perrault was elected Swift Current’s new mayor with 84.2 per cent of the vote on October 26. All four Councillors running for re-election were returned to council (Ryan Plewis, Pat Friesen, George Bowditch and Ron Toles), with newcomers Bruce Deg and Chris Martens added to city council.
Swift Current Elks Lodge #8 prepares to say goodbye
The Swift Current Elks Lodge #8 is handing in its charter after serving Swift Current and area for over 95 years.
The Meadows holds housewarming to celebrate official opening
The official opening of The Meadows on November 18 was more of a housewarming than a formal ceremony for Swift Current’s new 225-bed long-term care facility.
Vachon has lead responsibility on health authority transition team
Former Cypress Health Region CEO Beth Vachon has been given the duty of being the lead person in charge of Saskatchewan’s transition to a single health authority. Vachon was seconded to the position of Special Advisor to the Deputy Minister of Health.
Chinook Power Station preparing for spring construction start
After months of behind the scenes work since the project was first announced in June 2015, the Chinook Power Station is gearing up for a spring construction start.
The 350 megawatt natural gas-fired power plant, which will be located northeast of Swift Current, is scheduled to be completed by late 2019.
College adds Business Diploma in Management course for fall
Students will be able to take a full two year Business Diploma in Management course at the Great Plains College Swift Current Campus starting this fall.
The diploma program, which specializes in business management, is a step up from the one year business certificate course the college currently offers.
Swift Current population jumps over 1,000 but City disappointed over incomplete Census data
The City of Swift Current’s population increased to 16,604 according to 2016 Census Canada data, a jump from the 15,554 residents posted in 2011.
Statistics Canada notes that Swift Current’s growth of 1,050 residents, a 6.8 per cent increase in population over the five year census span, is above the national average of 5.0 per cent.
The Census Profile for the RM of Swift Current #137 recorded a -2.5 per cent drop in population, with 1,932 residents in total during the 2016 census, a slight decrease from the 1,981 recorded in 2011.
The combined City and RM population according to Stats Canada increased to 18,536 in the 2016 Census, a jump from the 17,535 residents posted in 2011.
As print industry sees resurgence, ANG expands media company to acquire Southwest Booster
The Medicine Hat News media network is expanding.
The Swift Current-based Southwest Booster, which distributes almost 14,000 editions weekly and operates a regional news web service, has become a sister company to the Alberta Newspaper Group.
The move was announced to employees earlier this week, with managers stating the addition shows the strength of local publishing, local advertising and news gathering.
Swift Current developed Strongfield selected as Seed of the Year West winner
Strongfield wheat, developed by Dr. John Clarke and the wheat breeding team at AAFC Swift Current, was selected as the 2016-17 Seed of the Year West winner.
Innovation Credit Union pursing vision to expand digitally across Canada
Innovation Credit Union is aiming to transition into a national credit union in order to provide digital services to customers across Canada.
Details of their Innovation 2020 plan will be discussed during Innovation Credit Union’s annual meeting on April 4, and all members are being asked to have their say during a membership vote this fall. Their ultimate goal is to complete the pursuit of becoming a national credit union by 2020.
Deep cuts and increased PST featured in Saskatchewan budget
The province made a series of difficult decisions as a wide impacting Saskatchewan Budget was tabled on March 22nd by the SaskParty government.
The tough measures in the 2017-2018 budget include a one per cent increase and an expansion of the Provincial Sales Tax, along with a list of eliminated programs and suspended grant payments.
STC service ending by the end of May
In a sudden move, the province announced that the Saskatchewan Transportation Company will be wound down by the end of May.
City proceeding with starting phase of Fire Hall replacement
The City of Swift Current has taken the first step to- wards replacing Saskatchewan’s longest serving fire hall. Swift Current City Council approved the initial phase of a longer term three phase plan which would proceed with the construction of a new fire hall, contingent on available grant funding.
McIntyre selected as Acting Director for Chinook School Division
Kyle McIntyre will be serving as the Acting Director for the Chinook School Division for the upcoming year.
McIntyre moves up from his Deputy Director position to serve at the helm of the Chinook School Division while Liam Choo-Foo completes a one year secondment with the Ministry of Education.
McIntyre, who has served as Deputy Director since August 2009, has had a 26-year career in education.
Community invited to celebrate restoration of library funding
A party is being thrown in Swift Current on April 29 to celebrate the provincial government’s decision to restore funding to Saskatchewan libraries.
Last Thursday, Education Minister Don Morgan was asked by Premier Brad Wall to review the funding to libraries, and on Monday the province reversed their cuts. The provincial government has restored funding for Saskatchewan libraries to 2016-2017 levels.
Rainbow Flag raised over Market Square
The Pride rainbow flag was raised above Market Square during a historical ceremony in Swift Current on May 29.
As was frequently mentioned during a lunch hour ceremony, the flag raising reflects shifting attitudes towards the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer) community in Swift Current.
Safe Places celebrates 1000th Youth Certified milestone
Swift Current’s Safe Places program recently reached an important milestone, with 1,000 individuals having become Safe Places – Youth Certified just just 15 months after the launch of the program back in March 2016.
Hunter Brothers Born and Raised Benefit Concert was a summer highlight
The Hunter Brothers shared some of the “I’m proud of where I’m from” spirit of their song Born and Raised by holding a video shoot for the song at their Shaunavon area family farm on July 14. The Hunter Brothers hosted their Born and Raised Benefit Concert in support of five local charities and they also filmed a high energy video for their upcoming single Born and Raised.
Lyric Theatre wins $30,000 Regional-West prize in This Place Matters competition
Swift Current’s grand ole Lyric Theatre clearly does matter to supporters after winning the $30,000 Regional-West prize in the National Trust This Place Matters competition.
Karla Wiens takes over helm of Chamber of Commerce
Karla Wiens has been unveiled as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Swift Current and District Chamber of Commerce.
The Chamber had been without a CEO since the June 23 resignation of previous CEO Clayton Wicks. A three-person Evaluation Committee reviewed a strong group of candidates before selecting Wiens.
Brad Wall retiring as Premier
Saskatchewan Premier and Swift Current MLA Brad Wall will be retiring as Saskatchewan’s Premier as soon as the Sask Party elects a new leader.
Wall first announced his intention to step down as Saskatchewan Premier in a video message last Thursday. He will also be retiring from elected politics when a replacement is in place.
Gull Lake adopts Safe Places initiative
Gull Lake has become the second community to adopt the Safe Places – Youth Certified program.
Launched in Swift Current in March 2016, the program is aimed at training volunteers who work with youth. To become Safe Places certified, an individual has to complete a Criminal Record Check, a Vulnerable Sector Check, and complete an on-line Respect in Sport training. Safe Places is also designed to help raise the awareness of abuse, bullying, harassment and neglect.
Gull Lake unveils special recognition in memory of Captain Keith Mirau
Gull Lake’s Cenotaph park now features a lasting recognition of the sacrifice made by Captain Keith Mirau.
The commemorative plaque was unveiled during a special event on August 9, with the ceremony also the first time the community has been able to gather after Gull Lake Town Council proclaimed every August 9 as Captain Keith Mirau Day.
Senior Citizens’ Activity Centre ceasing operations
Following the sale of their long time home, the Senior Citizens’ Activity Centre in Swift Current will be closing down at the end of the month.
A small group of 10 members attended their September General Meeting on September 6, where plans were put in motion to sell off the furnishings and fixtures in the building before walking away from the building on September 30.
RM of Swift Current will partner with Delta Aggregates to pave Airport Road
The R.M. of Swift Current is partnering with Delta Aggregates to pave Airport Road in the spring of 2018.
The R.M. announced last Thursday they have reached an agreement to pave an approximate 6.5 kilometre portion of Airport Road from the City of Swift Current boundary to the eastern boundary of the RM.
RCMP take an impressive amount of drugs off Swift Current’s streets
Swift Current RCMP have been successful in getting $142,341 worth of drugs off the streets of Swift Current thanks to some dedicated police work since April.
Staff Sergeant Gary Hodges attended the September 25 Swift Current City Council meeting where he reported the impressive drug seizure totals over the past few months.
Dorie’s House meets with Social Services Minister Paul Merriman
Dorie’s House is a project 35 years in the making. Its mandate is to offer temporary emergency housing to youth ages 14-17, who, for one reason or other, “fall between the cracks of the system.”
On September 21, we announced the temporary closure of Dorie’s House. Over the weekend, we were met with a passionate response from a concerned public, who, like us, believe our services to be paramount to the wellbeing of our community.
Cypress Regional Health Authority wraps up
The final board meeting of the Cypress Regional Health Authority signalled the end of an era for regional based healthcare decisions in Saskatchewan.
The final meeting of the eight member Cypress Regional Health Authority was hosted on Wednesday, November 22, with the province currently in the final days of their transition to a single Provincial Health Authority which launches on Monday, December 4.
New Executive Director sees exciting things on the horizon for Swift Current CMHA branch
Just months into her new position as Executive Director of the Canadian Mental Health Association Swift Current Branch, Jacqui Williams is excited for what is shaping up to be an exciting 2018.
Moe selected as new SaskParty leader and 15th Saskatchewan Premier
It took five months of campaigning, and five ballots.
But after all was said and done, Rosthern-Shellbrook MLA and former environment minister, Scott Moe, shocked the province by being selected as the leader of the Saskatchewan Party, and Saskatchewan’s new premier.
City approves $450,000 for phase two design of a new fire hall
The City of Swift Current is moving into the second phase of developing designs for a new fire hall.
City Council approved a $450,000 expenditure with P3Architecture Partnership (P3A) of Regina to develop construction ready blueprints for a new fire hall to be located in the empty lot be- side the Swift Current Library. The City of Swift Current’s recently passed 2018 budget approved $450,000 for a protective services facility design, and the City would be looking to spend $3.5 million in both 2019 and 2020 on the project.
McIntyre will assume Chinook’s Director of Education duties effective April 1
The Chinook Board of Education has voted to remove the acting director tag from Kyle McIntyre and have named him Chinook’s second ever Director of Education effective April 1.
McIntyre has been serving as the Acting Director since April 2017, moving up from his previous duties as Deputy Director when Liam Choo-Foo began a one year secondment with the Ministry of Education.
Hindley handily wins Swift Current by-election race
Everett Hindley posted a sizeable by-election win in the Swift Current Constituency on Thursday night to earn the opportunity to serve as the next Member of the Legislative Assembly for Swift Current.
Hindley received 3,776 votes, or 73.4 per cent of the ballots cast to outpace his nearest competitor in NDP candidate Stefan Rumpel who placed second with 1,243 votes or 24.2 per cent of the ballot.
Large turnout for emotional Dorie’s House Rally
An emotional outpouring of support was given to Dorie’s House during a community rally on March 28, just days after the Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter was denied funding in the upcoming provincial budget.
Tom Westbury, who oversaw the construction of Dorie’s House, which was named in honour of his mother, organized the rally. He is hoping providing a loud voice behind the rejected funding will help change the mind of government.
Dorie’s House provided housing support for teens between the ages of 14 and 18 at their eight bed facility from January 15 to October of 2017.
Humboldt tragedy sends shock waves throughout the hockey community
Sports, politics and the weather were all secondary topics to the waves of emotions which swept across Saskatchewan in the wake of the Humboldt Broncos tragedy on April 6.
The Humboldt Broncos team bus collided with a semi trailer while travelling to a Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League playoff game in Nipawin on April 6, and the lives of 15 individuals were lost during the unfathomable tragedy.
Swift Current aiming to attract investment from around the world
The City of Swift Current is reaching out around the globe to share a long list of benefits which they believe makes Swift Current an ideal place to invest and live.
Thanks to the emerging renewable energy sector, and other established strengths, city officials are hoping to get the word out that Swift Cur- rent has something to offer global businesses.
McClelland takes over as Swift Current Fire Chief
Darren McClelland has been promoted to serve as the new Fire Chief for the City of Swift Current’s Fire Department.
Fire Chief McClelland was formally introduced at the June 4 Swift Current City Council meeting.
McClelland moves up from his Deputy Fire Chief – Operations duties which he has held since 2013.
Saturn Power building 10 megawatt solar power project in Southwest
The RM of Coulee will be the home for a 10 mega- watt utility-scale solar power project to be built by Saturn Power.
In a press announcement on Tuesday, Saturn Power announced they have signed a 20 year power purchase agreement with SaskPower for power production from what will be known as the Highfield Solar Project.
Frontier Days 80th anniversary edition was a perfect 10
The Hats Off to 80 Years themed Frontier Days which ran from June 28 to July 1 was a hit for the Swift Current Agricultural and Exhibition Association.
This year’s four day showcase of the best of the Southwest was a fitting celebration of eighth decade of Frontier Days.
Shaunavon Fire Hall renamed Gordon Speirs Fire Hall
Long-serving Shaunavon Fire Department member Gordon Speirs was honoured to participate in a renaming of the Shaunavon Fire Hall to the Gordon Speirs Fire Hall on July 21.
As one of the highlight events of Boomtown Days 2018, an official naming ceremony was held on Saturday to officially rename the facility the Gordon Speirs Fire Hall.
Speirs joined the Shaunavon Volunteer Fire Department in 1945, and went on to serve as Fire Chief from 1949 to 1991.
Ribfest makes a successful weekend debut in Swift Current
Swift Current’s first ever Ribfest served up a tasty feast of award-winning BBQ delectables during the August long weekend.
The three day Ribfest at the Living Sky Casino boasted delicious food, a popular line-up of musical entertainment, along with a kid zone which provided a family fun atmosphere at the event.
Triathlon athletes test out Western Canada Summer Games course
A series of triathlon competitions were held on August 5 during the second test event for the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games.
Lyle Stewart stepping away from Agriculture Minister duties
Lumsden-Morse MLA Lyle Stewart is stepping down from his duties as Saskatchewan’s Minister of Agriculture to focus on his battle with cancer.
Stewart will continue in his duties as MLA,but will relinquish his responsibilities for his cabinet position in order to focus on his health.
“I was recently diagnosed with colorectal cancer and will be undergoing several months of pretty aggressive treatment,” Stewart said in a press statement.
Tributes pour in for Huyghebaert
A Celebration of Life service was held August 13 in memory of former Wood River MLA Yogi Huyghebaert.
He passed away on August 2 at the age of 74, and a private family interment was held at Mount View Cemetery in Fir Mountain.
He was an instrumental figure during the early years of the Saskatchewan Party.
Swift Current’s first century immortalized in mural project
A celebration of Swift Current’s first 100 years is proudly on display in the Frank Rempel Centennial Plaza, with 10 murals proudly depicting high- light events from the City’s first 10 decades.
Living Sky Casino reflects back on impactful first decade
The Living Sky Casino celebrated a look back at an impactful first decade while kicked off a five month long 10th anniversary celebration surrounding their December 29, 2008 opening.
A 10th anniversary Kick-off Gala was hosted on September 28 to both celebrate their achievements over the past 10 years, in addition to an announcement of a series of celebration events over the coming weeks and months.
Maverick School celebrates 25th anniversary
An afternoon program was held this past Friday, exactly 25 years after the first day of classes at Maverick School.
Steve Small, the initial teacher/principal at Maverick, recalled the first days of Maverick began on October 12, 1993 with 12 students in a space above Pharmasave.
Cabri and region celebrates efforts which secured Primary Health Care arrival
The refusal of the residents of Cabri and region to let healthcare services leave their communities was rewarded on November 16 when there was a grand re-opening of Cabri Medical Clinic.
The province has approved annual funding of approximately $145,000 for a full-time nurse practitioner along with other services which will allow the Cabri Medical Clinic to operate with a primary health care team.
Wiebe named winner of medal design contest
The creativity of local designer Brandon Wiebe will be featured on the medals which will be awarded at the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games.
Wiebe’s design was recently unveiled as the winning entry in the Medal Design Contest which sought locally created designs which reflect the unique nature, theme, culture and sprit of the Games in Swift Current.
Swift Current public transit service under the microscope this year
Swift Current’s public transit system will be watched closely during 2019 in an attempt to make the service more efficient and less of a money loser for the City of Swift Current.
Major volunteer recruitment drive launched for 2019 Western Canada Summer Games
2019 Western Canada Summer Games Director of Volunteers Sheena Gatzke unveiled the 2,000 Metre Race to help recruit 2,000 Games volunteers during a press conference on January 21.
One in four Canadians watched Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada
While the temperature was dropping in host community Swift Current, ratings were going up for the 2019 Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada.
The 19th annual Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada broadcast from Swift Current reached a total of 9.6 million Canadians on Saturday, an increase from the 9.1 million viewers recorded during the 2018 broadcast from Corner Brook, Newfoundland.
Kennedy surprised by unveiling of outdoor rink named in his honour
The City of Swift Current unveiled a surprise recognition to Sheldon Kennedy on February 7, naming the outdoor rink at Riverdene Park as The Sheldon Kennedy Rink.
The recognition came at the same time as the inaugural Sheldon Kennedy Youth Outdoor Classic was played as part of the Scotiabank Hockey Day in Canada.
MP Anderson not seeking re-election in Cypress Hills Grasslands
Long serving Cypress Hills Grasslands Member of Parliament David Anderson will not be seeking re-election this fall.
Anderson, who has served in Ottawa for 18 years and has sat as the representative for the Southwest in Ottawa since 2000, is stepping away from politics.
City electrical rates increasing as a result of carbon pricing
Swift Current residents are facing electrical rate increases effective April 1 as the City of Swift Current Light and Power Utility passes on the higher costs associated with the federal carbon pricing system.
Booster celebrating 50th anniversary
Volume 1, Issue 1 of the Southwest Booster rolled off the press for distribution on May 8, 1969.
From that modest eight page edition 50 years ago, the Booster continues to build on that entrepreneurial legacy to remain the longest running free distribution newspaper in the Southwest.
Funding allows Swift Current to proceed with intersection realignment project
Dollars provided through the Provincial Traffic Safety Fund is allowing the City of Swift Current to accelerate work on an intersection realignment project at the corner of Highway #4 and Battleford Trail.
Back on May 13, Swift Current was officially announced as a Provincial Traffic Safety Fund Grant recipient, receiving $100,000 for intersection construction, drainage, signage and realignment.
Patzer earns final ballot victory to win Conservative Party candidacy for Cypress Hills – Grasslands
Jeremy Patzer earned a fifth ballot victory to earn the Conservative Party nomination in the Cypress Hills – Grasslands constituency, ending a marathon nomination meeting in Swift Current.
Patzer captured the nomination ahead of Megz Reynolds, Norman Nordgulen, Kelly Williamson, Sean Checkley and Kyle Bennett.
Regional Healthcare Foundation launches digital mammography equipment campaign
There was an emotional launch to the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation’s new campaign to purchase a new mammography machine for the Cypress Regional Hospital.
The Close to the Heart Campaign was launched on Tuesday morning, with the Foundation making a year long effort to raise the $350,000 necessary to buy a new mammography unit to replace a decade old piece of equipment. The breakfast launch event generated a pledge of $30,225 from the capacity audience.
Hockridge has Make-a-wish granted to visit Dubai
Amisha Hockridge was surprised to learn the Make-awish Foundation granted her first choice wish of a family trip to Dubai.
Shortly after the end of the school year, the Hockridge family boarded a plane in Calgary to begin a 16-hour flight overseas.
Drake returns to celebrate 50th anniversary of Saskatchewan flag
Saskatchewan flag designer Anthony “Tony” Drake still swells up with pride when he shares some insights into the inspiration behind his now iconic flag design.
Drake is back in Canada from his home in England to help celebrate the golden anniversary of the Saskatchewan flag.
Drake’s design stood out ahead of the other over 4,000 entries which were submitted during a 1968 competition.
Council passes notice of motion aiming to lower playground and school zone speed limits to 30 km/h
Council approves speed limit reduction to 30 kilometres per hour in school and playground zones starting in September.
unanimous approval was given to a motion decreasing the existing speed limit of 40 kilometres per hour down to 30 kilometres per hour in all playground and school zones between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. daily on a year round basis.
New grandstand adds to Herbert Rodeo experience
The 33rd annual Herbert Stampede had a welcome addition for rodeo fans who have endured the elements at the popular August long weekend rodeo.
A new sheltered grandstand was used for the first time during the August 2 to 4th rodeo, and the improved seating assisted in drawing larger crowd numbers.
Share The Spirit Torch Relay lights excitement in the Southwest
The final lead up event to the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games shared some of the infectious enthusiasm building behind the imminent arrival of the August 9 to 18 Games.
The Share The Spirit Torch Relay was held in Swift Current, Lac Pelletier and Saskatchewan Landing on August 3 to 5, with 25 individuals serving as torchbearers during the lead up event to the Games.
Swift Current takes first step in constructing gasification facility
With markets shrinking for recycled products, the City of Swift Current is taking the first step towards building a facility that would in part turn recycled newspaper and cardboard into electricity.
Western Canada Summer Games a perfect 10
If you don’t count the inconvenience of some wind and rain, the 10 days of competition at the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games in Swift Current scored a perfect 10.
Swift Current pulled off a Games experience that drew rave reviews from participants and fans, signalling the fifth time Saskatchewan has hosted the Games and the first time in two decades since Prince Albert hosted in 1999.
Swift Current extends agreement to host CCA Finals Rodeo through to 2025
The Canadian Cowboys’ Association Finals Rodeo will be hosted in Swift Current through to 2025 after a new five-year agreement was approved to continue the CCA signature event in Swift Current.
Walk-in Counselling services will launch in Swift Current on September 23
A new walk-in counselling service will be opening next week in order to provide more alternatives for people seeking assistance with mental health issues.
Enroute Walk-in Counselling Clinic will be offering walk-in mental health services on a four day a week basis effective September 23. Located in the Fresh Start building at 214 1st Ave. N.E., there is no cost for individuals accessing services at the new office.
SaskAbilities surprised with Chamber Member Business of the Year recognition
The impact of SaskAbilities in the community was a leading reason for the Swift Current and District Chamber of Commerce selecting SaskAbilities as the SCBEX Spirit of Swift Current 2018 Member Business of the Year.
Council funds emergency repairs for CPR Weir
Swift Current City Council has okayed an expenditure of an additional $350,000 to make an emergency repair to the CPR Weir on the Swift Current Creek.
Funding helps two major Southwest water projects move forward
A pair of Southwest drinking water projects are taking additional steps forward following a major funding announcement on Monday.
Both the Town of Shaunavon, and the Southwest Regional Potable Water Supply System Project were announced as successful recipients of funding from both the provincial and federal governments through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
A total of $25 million in funding will support the development of two key drinking water initiatives.
Dekowny will assume the helm of Dr. Noble Irwin Foundation in 2020
For the second time in the history of the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation, the turning of the calendar to a new decade will also bring a change at the helm of the Foundation.
Clay Thompson, who has served as Executive Director since January 1, 2010, will be retiring at the end of 2019 and turning the reigns over to Jim Dekowny, who moves up from his position as Major Gifts/ Development Officer.
Patzer dominates at the ballot box to win Cypress Hills-Grasslands seat
Jeremy Patzer rode a wave of disappointment with the current Liberal government all the way to Ottawa by easily capturing the federal election race in the Cypress Hills-Grasslands Constituency.
The solid bastion of support for the Conservative Party in the Southwest rose to record highs with Patzer earning 30,898 votes to receive an unprecedented 81.2 per cent of the votes (results with 171 of 172 polls reporting).
Dorie’s House will be utilized for Southwest Crisis Services programming
Southwest Crisis Services (SWCS) is excited to announce a dynamic new community partnership with Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter (SWYES). Starting this month, the SWCS’S Outreach Team will be moving, delivering its programs from the offices of Dorie’s House, cementing an exciting and mutually beneficial partnership.
Houghtaling wins prestigious Saskatchewan Arts Award
An over two decade commitment to helping improve the arts scene in Swift Current has earned Kim Houghtaling a prestigious 2019 Saskatchewan Arts Award.
Houghtaling, the Director/curator of the Art Gallery of Swift Current, was the winner in the Leadership – Individual category of the annual Saskatchewan Arts Board awards. He received his award during an awards banquet in Saskatoon on November 4.
Swift Current caps 2019 with another world-class event
It may still be November, but Saturday seemed to mark an unofficial conclusion to 2019 in Swift Current when the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge came to an end. The tournament, co-hosted with Medicine Hat, was the fourth and final major sporting event held in Swift Current during the calendar year.
City launches Water Service Identification Plan
The City of Swift Current will this week be commencing the initial phase of a multi-phased plan to identify water services – the connection of water pipe that connects the water supply from the City to the pipes inside of residential/ commercial buildings – in City households and businesses.
The full scope of the project is to identify, assess and take remedial action, if necessary, when residential and commercial buildings are discovered to have lead services supplying them with water.
Cre8tive Minds Early Learning Child Care Center seeking support to renovate new location
The Cre8tive Minds Early Learning Child Care Center has launched a Go Fund Me campaign in order to pay for a $60,000 renovation at a new location.
Cre8tive Minds ELCC is a registered charitable organization that services approximately 45 children. In order to maintain their license they need to relocate to a permanent location that has all of the structural (internal and external) requirements in line with government regulations.
Gala grand opening for Chinook Power Station
The addition of 353 megawatts of baseload power at the Chinook Power Station will help Saskatchewan transition to more renewable energy sources in the coming years.
A grand opening of the Chinook Power Station just outside of Swift Current was hosted on December 6, with dignitaries and SaskPower officials joining to celebrate the completion of the combined cycle natural gas plant.