WEYBURN – The 19th edition of the Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Show was a resounding success in every way, said the chair of the Oil Show board, with over 3,000 people going through the gates to take it in.
“As a board, we are incredibly pleased with this year’s Oil Show,” said Oil Show chair Dan Cugnet. “A terrific group of exhibitors, a stellar lineup of speakers and dignitaries and the awards are always an excellent way for us to recognize people who have contributed so much to this sector. More importantly, it meant so much to our communities in southeast Saskatchewan with the industry’s impact over the entire province.”
There were a number of unknown factors for this show, he noted, including turning the management of the show over to the Weyburn Chamber of Commerce with a new show manager, Monica Osborn, along with a new way to do online registrations.
“It was a bit of an unknown for us as a board on how that transition would work. But, as we could see with the show, it was a tremendous success and that’s a huge credit to the team. Monica Osborne, as our new show manager, did just an exceptional job, with support from Larry Heggs, the Chamber manager, and Reece Pittman assisting,” said Cugnet.
He added that the online registrations streamlined the process for everyone attending.
“This is partly to create more data points we can use as a show to create a more specific and tailored experience for those attending, and also to create more value between shows for our exhibitors and leading up to the next one,” he noted.
All of the meals were sold out, including 900 for the kickoff steak-or-lobster dinner on Tuesday evening, catered by the Red Wings and Estevan OTS; 650 attended the awards luncheon on Wednesday, which was catered by the Estevan OTS, and served by the Silver Seals swimming club; 800 came for the evening meal, catered by the Young Fellows Club; and 500 attended to the Thursday luncheon, where commentator Rex Murphy was the featured speaker. This meal was catered by McKenna Hall, and served by volunteers from the Family Place.
The Young Fellows supper had some moments of drama, as their smoker cooking the prime rib supper caught on fire in the wind. Within a couple of hours, they were able to source over 800 steaks from Western Prime Meats and the Prairie Sky Co-op.
“They had all the equipment they required to feed the entire curling rink full of people for our big awards night. They really pulled off a miracle and as a board, we can’t commend them enough for it,” said Cugnet.
Asked if the exhibitors were happy with how the show went, as well as the oil show board, Cugnet replied, “We were very happy to have such a strong show. Exiting a pandemic and also some tough headwinds the sector has been faced with, was somewhat of an unknown. I think what we can take away is that people were really looking forward to getting together again, showcasing our sector.”
Cugnet added from what he heard from speakers and exhibitors, “There is a lot of renewed optimism in the oil and gas industry heading into what looks like a pretty good bull run for commodities and pricing the next few years.”
One of the highlights for the show chair was to pick up one of the speakers, Rex Murphy, from the airport on Tuesday, and he took him back to the airport on Thursday after the show was done.
“It is an absolute treat to have a storyteller and a pragmatist like Rex Murphy come to enjoy our city and province for a few days, and more importantly, give us all his very common sense view of Canada, the world and its needs. That helps confirm that what we are doing here is necessary to improving the world, making it a safer place, and lifting others out of poverty to enjoy our modern standard of living,” he said.
Cugnet paid tribute to the many volunteers and service organizations who stepped up to help the board put the show on.
“The real highlight for me is how we have so many volunteers and service clubs step up from all over SE Saskatchewan to make this a show such a huge success. And having all those groups, individuals and companies that all come together creates the opportunity to showcase our world-class oil and gas sector. That’s the goal of the show,” he said.
“Southeast Saskatchewan is an amazing collection of communities and people. We should all be proud of who we are, what we do here, and how we do it.”