UNITY — Canada Day celebrations took place in Luseland and Unity on July 1, as people welcomed the opportunity to gather again as well as save on gas by celebrating events in their home community.
Organizers at Unity and District Heritage Museum say they were exceptionally happy with volunteers who came to help set up the event tent prior to July 1, along with around 450 people attending the full day of activities. More than 200 people took in the pancake breakfast as well as a large crowd took part in the evening’s chili supper.
Museum committee members put in much work into setting up, organizing and manning the day and say that the good turnout is not only a reflection of how much everyone was ready to return to normal after the pandemic pause but also a testament to the community support they receive.
After sitting stationary for 20 years, the blacksmith shop was on fire. Forging hobbyists, Murray Haughian and Bob McGonigle highlighted their love of the age-old trade.
Diamond Valley reptiles, a new business in Unity, was also on the grounds for the day with interested people having a chance for up close and personal interactions with the creatures.
Unity Fire Department brought some big fun for kids with a foam party and accompanying slip and slide.
Other afternoon activities included rope making, fresh bread from the clay over, gun presentation, wagon and speeder rides, Lions children’s games, sand treasure dig, food trucks and much more.
The tent and grounds around the tent were full for the live entertainment of recording artists, Jake Vaadeland, and the Sturgeon River Boys Band.
A special unveiling took place of an exhibit housing items from Maljan’s Shoe Repair.
Sylvia Maljan says, “It was a special highlight of the day when the dedication of a new building unveiled to portray the history of Dusan’s 63-year-old business. What a special tribute and we are so thankful to the volunteers who put this all together so quickly.”
The day ended with the always popular fireworks provided by the Unity Chamber of Commerce.
In Luseland, there were two days of Canada Day activities to take part in that offered something for absolutely all generations of participants. June 30, the slo-pitch tournament began and was accompanied by a refreshment garden and dance. July 1 kicked off with a flag raising and singing of O Canada followed by Canada Day cupcakes and coffee at the Pioneer Club.
A pancake breakfast prepared by the Luseland Fire Department and Knights of Columbus was then served. The Luseland Museum opened a “Women of the Prairies” display featuring activities using a treadle sewing machine and a spinning wheel, and also offered butter and ice cream making.
Kids’ activities ran most of the day and included the always popular Smurf train, the fairgrounds merry-go-round, bouncy castles, face painting, the Balloon Guy and a special visit from Rapunzel and Flynn from Tangled in Tiaras out of Saskatoon.
Slo-pitch continued throughout the day. The Pioneer Club offered bingo, the Luseland Community Theatre played a special movie and the community swimming pool held pool Olympics and special activities.
Residents said the day in Luseland was full of fun, fellowship, food and community camaraderie and even though July 1 kicked off a long weekend, the turnout was exceptional.