WEYBURN – The outdoor centennial concert hosted by the Weyburn Young Fellows Club was a huge success, said organizers, with all 4,000 tickets sold out to hear the four music performers sing on the stage at Jubilee Park on Thursday evening.
The concert, held to mark the 100th year of the local service club, featured headliner acts Tenille Arts and the Hunter Brothers, and opening acts Brayden King and Dan Cugnet, with the music running from 6 p.m. to after 11 p.m., with perfect weather throughout the evening.
“It was an overwhelming success, and we were so happy the community supported us as they always do. Everybody seemed to have a big smile on their faces, and were just happy to be outdoors enjoying the evening together,” said Todd Bedore, chair of the concert organizing committee for the Young Fellows Club.
He noted they had an army of around 250 volunteers helping them out for this event, from businesses and community groups, including Weyburn Minor Ball, the Scouts, Weyburn Credit Union, Weyburn Minor Football, Weyburn Minor Hockey, Vermilion Energy and the Weyburn Silver Seals swimming club.
Some of these groups were also providing food for the crowds, including Minor Hockey, Minor Ball, the Scouts and the Curling Club.
Asked how the performers liked the event, Bedore said, “We had very positive feedback from all the music performers. They said what a great venue this was at Jubilee Park, and it was well set up. Everything went well in the end.”
Opening act Brayden King, originally from Weyburn and now living in Edmonton, loved being a part of this evening.
“It was just incredible to see Weyburn come together for a big show like that. I was honoured to be playing a show of that scale in my hometown,” he said on Saturday. “It really was mind blowing. I’m still riding a high from that night.”
King went on to play at Katepwa Beach on Canada Day, while Tenille Arts played a concert in Saskatoon.
King said he loves being busy as a performer. “Performing live is what bring me the most joy in my career, so I do it as much as I possibly can. I don’t mind the long drives and late nights, the shows are always worth it.”
Dan Cugnet had a similar feeling as one of the opening acts for the night.
“It was an incredible thing to be a part of it for Weyburn and area, an absolute privilege and honour to have the opportunity to be on the same stage as such amazing talent, and also to play a role in recognizing and celebrating the Young Fellows organization,” he said.
During his set, he had the audience give a standing ovation to the Young Fellows Club for all they have done for the community in the last 100 years.
“After the last two-plus years, people needed something like this event to connect us again as a community and to our neighbours. (It was) a reminder of how wonderful our community is, and how fortunate we are to live where we live,” said Cugnet, adding this concert event was a testament to the Young Fellows and the community to host “a world-class event, and also fill it with locally grown world-class talent. A day I will never forget.”
During her set, Tenille Arts talked about how overwhelmed she was that she could perform at such a big event in her hometown after being away for so long, noting there were people who have heard her sing at contests and venues in the city since she was 10 years old. She also pointed out that some artists have said they don’t have the support of their home community, but she always has.
Club president Chad Ror took to the stage during the concert, and told the audience the club had officially celebrated their centennial about a month prior to the event.
“The needs and wants of the community have changed, but our dedication to the community has not, and will not,” said Ror, noting the club is well set up to continue into the future with 40 active members currently.
“We are your neighbours, your friends and your family. We are a service club filled with community-minded volunteers. We just want to give back and make a difference in the community that we live, work and play in,” he said, pointing out the Young Fellows have donated back about $2.4 million over the last 100 years, money that has been given them by the community as they supported events and fundraisers.
“We understand the responsibility you have given us, and the trust you have placed in us with your hard-earned money. That’s why every single dollar raised by us goes back into the community, from supporting sports team, supporting swimming lessons in the spring and public skating in the winter, and pretty much everything you can think of in between,” said Ror.
Incoming club president Chad Bailey also thanked the crowd for supporting this event, noting, “We don’t do this for a living. This was all from one member’s dream.”