Archive for Davidson

Student athletes hot on the track despite cold weather

Competitors in the bantam boys 100-metre dash included Sam Thomson (far left) and Connor George (second from right) of Kenaston, and Logan Nelson-Schneider of Davidson (far right).

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — A chilly spring day greeted young athletes from around the district as they gathered at Davidson School on Wednesday.

Davidson hosted eight other schools, including nearby Kenaston and Loreburn, in the east sectional track and field meet.

Paulette Killoh, one of the staff organizers, said the events ran on schedule for the most part.

Davidson hosts every three years, she noted, adding, “Every time you host you get a little better at it.”

Though the skies were sunny and clear, the temperature hovered between 5°C and 10°C for much of the day, and wind was also a constant presence.

Athletes, supervisors and spectators were bundled up warmly, some wrapping themselves in blankets and sleeping bags to guard against the frigid air.

Volunteers had to keep a close watch on the track during the hurdles events as the hurdles themselves were prone to falling over in the wind.

Killoh said they decided to hold the high jump in the high school gym, to avoid having similar problems with the bar.

It was a successful day for many of Davidson’s athletes, several of whom enjoyed first-place finishes in multiple events.

For the bantam girls, Maggie Boehm took first place in both the 100-m dash and the triple jump.

Among the midget girls, Jordan Matheson was first in the 100-m dash, long jump and triple jump, while Tylar Oliver was tops in both the 200-m and 400-m events.

Nolan Allan was first in three bantam boys events: the 100-m dash, high jump and long jump. Deiondre Boychuk led in the 400-m and 800-m events, while Hunter Herback was first in both discus throw and javelin throw.

Clay Murfitt, competing in the junior boys division, took first in the 100-m dash, 100-m hurdles and shot put.

For the senior boys, Jacob Schilling led in the 400-m and 800-m events.

Loreburn’s Anika Lakinger took first in shot put and javelin throw for the bantam girls, while Abigail Graham led in the 80-m hurdles and triple jump for the junior girls.

The top six competitors in each event are invited to move on to the district meet, which will be held the weekend of May 26 and 27 in Outlook.

Killoh said some Davidson athletes who qualified for districts would be unable to compete due to other commitments such as hockey or volleyball.

For the full story, detailed results and additional photos, please see the May 22 edition of The Davidson Leader or call 306-567-2047 to subscribe today.

Town to consider business licenses

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — A new bylaw to license businesses in town will be on the table at Davidson’s next council meeting.

The bylaw would target businesses that aren’t currently paying commercial property tax in town, such as home-based and online operations.

During their regular meeting on Tuesday, councillors discussed some of the bylaws in use in other towns.

Mayor Tyler Alexander said a bylaw would bring in revenue while also enabling the town to track such businesses for promotional purposes.

“I agree personally that we should do something,” said the mayor, suggesting that a bylaw could be enacted by council soon to take effect at the start of next year.

Alexander expressed approval for the bylaw currently in effect in Outlook, where fees for business licenses generally range between $50 and $150 per year.

Administrator Gary Edom agreed to prepare a draft of a bylaw for council’s approval at the June meeting.

The subject of an updated business license bylaw has been discussed by council on and off over the past couple of years.

Bylaw 352, “The Licensing Bylaw,” was passed by council in April 1981, under Mayor Milan Puckett and administrator Bud Larson.

The bylaw officially remains on the books, although it has not been enforced in decades and is now outdated. Edom said it is due to be repealed.

The licensing bylaw required tradespeople, businessmen and operators to register and pay a license fee in order to carry on business within the town.

It makes provision for a license inspector to carry out enforcement, and sets out fees for everything from ambulances ($1 per year) to piano tuners ($10).

For our full report from town council, please see the May 22 edition of The Davidson Leader or call 306-567-2047 to subscribe today.

Union members have their say on Bill 40

Lorne Hill, chief steward for Unifor Local 3 in Moose Jaw, speaks to workers gathered outside Arm River MLA Greg Brkich’s office in Davidson on May 4.

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — Members of Unifor stopped by Greg Brkich’s office recently with a message for the Arm River MLA.

About 25 union members gathered on the sidewalk on Washington Avenue during the noon hour on May 4 to protest a recent bill on Crown corporations.

Bill 40, passed in the provincial legislature on April 26, sets a definition for privatization, allowing up to 49 per cent of a Crown corporation, such as SaskTel or SGI, to be sold.

Lorne Hill, chief steward for Unifor Local 3 in Moose Jaw, said the bill amounts to breaking up assets that belong to the people of Saskatchewan.

“This current provincial government has no mandate to put our assets up for sale,” Hill said.

The Unifor members, all SaskTel employees, were in Davidson on May 4 for a provincial meeting. They marched to the MLA’s office during their lunch break.

They carried signs and cheered during Hill’s speech, responding to his criticism of Sask Party MLAs with calls of “Shame!” and “Liars!”

Brkich’s office was closed for the noon hour, and the protest drew few onlookers, but those gathered were not discouraged.

“Whether Greg was here or not today,” said Hill, “we want all members of the Legislative Assembly to know our stance on this issue.”

He accused the government of “risking the assets of future generations,” adding that SaskTel has paid off $500 million in dividends to the province over the last decade.

“That is tax dollars that people don’t have to pay out of their pockets,” said Hill, explaining that the protesters want to promote unity and not division. “We want to support everybody, we want to protect what is rightfully theirs.”

The NDP has also criticized the bill, with opposition leader Trent Wotherspoon calling it “an incredible bertrayal of Saskatchewan people.”

Greg Brkich spoke to the Leader in the bill’s defense on Wednesday, arguing that it would strengthen, not weaken, the Crowns by protecting 51 per cent of them from privatization.

He characterized the bill as “housekeeping” in case an opportunity for partnership comes along.

In the case of SaskTel, he said, partnerships could make the company more competitive by connecting them with new technology.

He also said the bill could bring new investment dollars, giving the example of pension plans.

“There’s lots of Saskatchewan investment money that’s flowing out to entities in other provinces,” he said.

Brkich dismissed opposition criticism of the bill: “The world’s always coming to an end . . . That’s their role, to try to light as many fires as they can at that end.”

He also recalled that former NDP premier Roy Romanow had talked about looking for potential partners for SaskTel, back in 2000.

A news release from Unifor pointed to Manitoba as an example, arguing that the privatization of the provincial telecom MTS led to higher phone bills there.

“It could mean a decrease, too,” Brkich countered in response. “It very well could be cheaper rates and better coverage, with more investment coming in.”

Unifor represents around 3,300 SaskTel employees, including technicians, account and service representatives, and clerical and administrative staff.

Local Cadets headed to flight school in Manitoba

Emily Jones of Craik and Jacob Heinrich of Davidson, both Air Cadets in 40 Snowbird Squadron, have been accepted to attend the Cadet Flying Training Centre in Gimli, Man., this summer.

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — When Cadet Sgt. Jacob Heinrich learned he’d been accepted to attend flight school in Manitoba this summer, he wanted to celebrate.

At the time, however, he was standing in parade formation with the other members of the 40 Snowbird Squadron, so the celebration had to wait.

“You still have to keep a straight face,” he recalled. “I was biting my lip pretty hard.”

Heinrich, a Grade 10 student at Davidson School, is one of two local cadets invited to attend the Cadet Flying Training Centre (CFTC) in Gimli, Man., this summer.

He and fellow cadet Emily Jones of Craik will spend a month and a half at the centre, training on the Schweizer SGS 2-33 glider.

Both Heinrich and Jones began their cadet careers with 553 Sherlock Squadron in Davidson.

After the local squadron became inactive due to declining enrolment, they and a couple of others transferred to 40 Snowbird Squadron in Moose Jaw.

Local cadets travel to the city one night a week for regular meetings, and more often when they have weekend activities.

Heinrich began the application process for the CFTC in September, attending ground school to learn the basics of aviation.

For the full story, please see the May 15 edition of The Davidson Leader or call 306-567-2047 to subscribe today.

Double bill presented at dessert theatre

Clockwise from top left, Katherine Cool, Geena Heinrich, Jacob Schilling, Sarah Allan and Tia Shaw are pictured in a scene from “Storied,” presented by the Davidson School senior drama club on May 4.

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — An audience of close to 100 people was treated to a double bill as Davidson School hosted a dessert theatre night on May 4, featuring the junior and senior drama clubs.

Up first was the junior club’s performance of “10 Reasons You Should Have Stayed Home Sick Today,” by E. M. Bell.

Directed by Jason Low, the one-act comedy play featured a cast of 10 students in grades 7 through 9.

The 10 reasons included getting stuck with an awkward bus seatmate, facing an impossible pop quiz, and slipping in mud that leaves a suggestive stain on the victim’s pants.

Following was the senior club’s performance of “Storied” by Bradley Watson, directed by Arlene Low, with a cast of 12 actors in grades 10 through 12.

The surreal play follows three teenagers — Tatum (Katherine Cool), Becky (Geena Heinrich) and Kevin (Jacob Schilling) — who find themselves trapped in an alternate universe.

There, they encounter many fictional characters — some they recognize, like Alice (Emily Read) and the White Rabbit (Chase Lyn Dean), and others they don’t, like the Big Blue Metal Thing (Sarah Bublish) and the Sniper in a Tutu (Justin Sandsbraaten).

They eventually find themselves caught in a conflict between “Good Ideas” from classic stories, and “Bad Ideas” that originate in lesser works.

The teens encounter a pair of witches, Brittany (Sarah Allan) and Colleen (Tia Shaw), who explain that they drew them into this dimension by casting a spell.

For the full story and more photos, please see the May 15 edition of The Davidson Leader or call 306-567-2047 to subscribe today.


Steak supper raises $8,200 for local couple

A benefit held in Davidson on April 25 raised more than $8,200 for Betsie and Peter Leach, pictured here.

By Joel van der Veen

DAVIDSON — When she and her husband Peter pulled up at Davidson Town Hall the night of April 25, Betsie Leach figured they must have gotten the date wrong.

“I thought there might be a wedding on, with all the cars parked there,” she told the Leader last week.

As it turned out, hundreds of people were there for them.

“We are still speechless about it,” she said. “We can’t believe it.”

The Leaches were the guests of honour at a steak supper held that night, which raised more than $8,200 to support them.

The husband and wife, who reside in Davidson, have both been off of work for the last several months as they deal with ongoing health concerns.

Dana Billett, who organized the event with Lindsay Cross, said they began planning for the fundraiser in late March.

“We just thought they could use a little bit of extra support,” Billett explained.

Co-workers, friends and other residents stepped up, donating food, auction and raffle items, and volunteering their time and effort.

Western Sales donated the food for the main course, Homemade Goodness donated macaroni salad and the United Church ladies contributed the desserts.

The Kinsmen donated the use of their barbecue while Riverbend Co-op provided the propane. Many others volunteered to set up, clean up and run the event. Dozens of items were donated for the silent auction and raffle tables.

Billett said 240 tickets were pre-sold, while many who couldn’t attend made donations in support of the Leaches.

“There isn’t a person that Lindsay or I sold a ticket to who didn’t mention how sweet or kind or caring Betsie is all of the time,” said Billett. “Everyone was willing to help out and support them just on that alone.”

The Leaches, originally from South Africa, moved to Davidson in October 2014 after Peter accepted a position at Western Sales.

For the full story, please see the May 8 edition of The Davidson Leader or call 306-567-2047 to subscribe today.