Dawson Trail Dispatch August 2014

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2014 Rodeo Adds More Excitement By Dan Guetre

RM of Piney’s Fire Department Breaks Gender Barriers

Newly appointed RM of Piney Municipal Fire Chief Ina Thomson Ruttle and her daughter Amanda Ruttle who was recently named as Deputy Fire Chief for Sprague-Station 2. Photo by Marianne Curtis

By Marianne Curtis In July, the RM of Piney broke through a major gender barrier by appointing long time Sprague volunteer fire fighter Ina Thomson Ruttle as their new Municipal Fire Chief. Ruttle’s appointment makes her the first female municipal fire chief in the entire province of Manitoba. As the new RM of Piney Municipal Fire Chief, Ina will oversee all three of the municipality’s fire departments, including Piney (Station 1), Sprague (Station 2) and the newest edition Woodridge (Station 3).

“I joined the Sprague department 32 years ago when it was first formed,” recalled Ruttle. “The first department was Piney then a year later we founded Sprague. I was there from the start.” When asked why she joined, Ruttle admits to believing the department needed a woman. “I joined right from the start because there needed to be a woman in the department and I was not there to bring muffins,” she chuckled, before explaining further. “I showed up at the

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The community of Richer is once again hosting an exciting action packed rodeo as the Richer Rodeo committee and the Richer Community Club prepare for an encore event which saw them win Rodeo of the Year in 2013. August 8, 9 and 10 is the date set for the Annual Richer Rough Stock Rodeo. The rodeo will feature an added addition this year with a special Bull-nanza slated for the Friday evening featuring 40 or more bull riders vying for the custom designed Championship Buckles. Also, the Manitoba Cutting Horse Association will be out competing Friday afternoon in the rodeo arena. There is no cost to watch this event. “Last year’s rodeo set a record attracting over 200 entries and we are expecting to break that record again this year,” says cochair Pat Stolwyk. “We are attracting a high number of competitors because of the cash prizes and custom buckles available. We knew early on, based on the tremendous success we had last year, we would have to work hard to create an even better show. We know that those who come out will not be disappointed.” With new bleachers built for spectators, added food choices, an improved “Trading Post” area, more activities for kids and their parents, the rodeo committee is sure everyone will be impressed. “We again partnered with Heartland Rodeo Association and 7 Cross Ranch because of the professionalism of the organizations. The Heartland crew is a great bunch of people to work with and 7 Cross provides a healthy and exciting stock for the competitors,” says Stolwyk. “Happy competitors, and exciting animals almost guarantees a spectacular show for our guests.” While winning the coveted Rodeo of the Year title again is on the minds of many of the organizers, pulling off a successful rodeo where fans leave knowing they got their moneys worth of entertainment is the ultimate goal. Last year the rodeo attracted almost 3,000 people through the gate. Organizers are expecting an even larger crowd this year. “We are keeping the ticket prices affordable for families,” says Stolwyk. “The Friday night Bull-nanza and social are only $15 for adults. Kids, with their parents, are free! As for the Saturday and Sunday, we kept the 2013 prices. We want to gain a reputation of being family friendly and affordable.” In addition to the Friday night Bull-nanza and social and the Saturday and Sunday rodeo, the weekend includes a pancake breakfast, family fun zone, a live Saturday night concert with Quinton Blair, live and DJ’ed music all weekend in the beer gardens, over 50 crafts and product vendors in the Trading Post, a parade, Gymkhana, Mutton Busting, a special Sunday intermission show featuring the Canadian Northern Lights Drill Team, and lots more. For more information, the Richer Roughstock Rodeo has setup a new website at www.richerrodeo.ca where you will find a program, event list, area accommodations and more.