ESTEVAN - Bienfait was decked out in red and white, and Canadian flags abundant, during the town’s annual Canada Day celebrations.
Activities were held throughout the day, starting with a pancake breakfast, supplied by the Southern Plains Co-op, in the morning, and ending after dusk with the annual fireworks spectacular that attracted people from several communities.
Daniyale Woolsey with the Bienfait Recreation Board said everything went over in a “fantastic” fashion.
“I think it was better than anybody anticipated, and I’m pretty sure that absolutely everybody had a great time,” said Woolsey.
After the pancake breakfast was served, the attention shifted to the parade through the town’s streets.
“I’m not even sure how many entrants there were. There were lots. It was probably the most that I think I’ve ever organized,” said Woolsey.
The parade started at Bienfait Weldon School and then moved down several roads before ending at the school. Woolsey, who is part of the fire department, noted that she watched the parade from the top of one of the firetrucks and she could see the people were jam-packed on every street.
The fireworks show did suffer a brief delay, as a spark caused a bush to catch fire, which required the fire department’s attention. But it was still a great show and Woolsey said it entertained a lot of people.
“There was people backed up along the highway … and people sitting all over on the school grounds.”
Numerous other activities happened during the day. The town’s swimming pool was open and was a popular attraction. The fire department held a mini-fireman’s rodeo for the kids.
Other activities included a dunk tank, bouncy houses, a 50-50 draw, a slo-pitch tournament and cotton candy.
Birthday cake was served after the parade, Bingo was contested at the Royal Canadian Legion's Bienfait branch, and the firefighters played the farmers in their annual slo-pitch showdown.
The fire department held a cabaret during the evening that Woolsey said was well-attended and had many well-behaved revellers.
Also during the Canada Day festivities, the Bienfait Memorial Arena accepted a cheque for $50,000 from the Affinity Credit Union for upgrades to the ice plant – the latest support for the project.
The money that was raised during the Canada Day celebrations will be directed to the Bienfait Recreation Board. In September, there will be a meeting to divide the money between the town’s arena, swimming pool, curling club, minor hockey association, minor baseball organization and public library. The school community council also receives support.