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Wednesday, May 18, 2016 • Vol.120 No.45 • Neepawa, Manitoba

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‘All I could see was devastation’

This was the view Blair Ferguson had of the massive fire that struck the city of Fort McMurray, Alberta and surrounding region earlier this month. The Neepawa resident has worked in Fort McMurray for the past 10 years and saw first hand the impact this disaster had on the area and its people. He has shared with the Neepawa Press his account of how the situation unfolded. That story can be found on page 2. PHOTO COURTESY OF BLAIR FERGUSON

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Eyewitness to the devastation in Fort McMurray By Eoin Devereux The Neepawa Press

Blair Ferguson could see the flames and smoke in the distance, when his hotel in Fort McMurray, Alberta was temporarily evacuated on Sunday, May 1. He, along with everyone else, kept a close eye on the path of the fire and the prevailing wind, still optimistic that the worst of it would miss the city. But by Tuesday, May 3, that optimism gave way to the grim reality of just how serious the situation was about to get for him and the community of nearly 80,000 people Ferguson, a Neepawa resident, has worked in the Fort McMurray region for a decade and in that time, it has become his second home. Being so familiar with the area and its people, Ferguson said very early on, you could sense the tension blanketing the city as everyone waited to see how the situation would play out “Where I stay, it’s a suburban area called Gregoire, [located in the southeast portion of the city]. We were evacuated from the area the first time on the Sunday night [May 1], because the fire was about 1.5 kilometres southeast of town. We were only evacuated for maybe four hours, and everyone was worried about which way the fire would go. If the wind shifted, it could have been an issue,” said Ferguson. “Then on Monday [May 2], everything was normal. The talk around town at that time was that they were all relieved that it seemed to be moving away. But then, the temperature went up, the humidity dropped and the wind changed and on the Monday night, the fire had gone from 850 hectares to, I believe, 8,500 hectares. So, as soon as that wind changed on Tuesday and the size of the fire was that much bigger, that sense of relief just disappeared and everyone began to fear the worst.”


Blair Ferguson witnessed the destructive force of the Fort McMurray fire first hand, as he attempted to return to the city and retrieve his truck before being evacuated from the region.

cause here is my truck, it’s just 200 feet off the main highway. What am I supposed to do? So, I wait until I got up close to where the RCMP had the road blocked. I parked the company van, got out and walked across the highway to talk to them. I talked to the corporal, who was in charge of the situation. I told him who I was and the circumstances of where my vehicle was. So the next thing I know, there are two vehicles sitting The evacuation order arrives there. The officer said to me ‘Get in-between them. FolOver the next few days, Ferguson would watch the low the one guy and the other will follow behind you.’ situation unfold from just outside the fire range, about That was great. Thank you very much. As I’m walking 20 kilometres north of the city. From that vantage point back to the company vehicle to go into that section of however, he was still close enough to be town and I see the one cruiser just take affected by the uncertainty. off, full speed. Didn’t even wait for me to “I went into work on Tuesday morning. get into the truck [with a chuckle]. So I The company I work for, we’re a contractrush in, start driving, trying to catch up or on a Suncor Energy site, I got into work to him. I’m doing 130, 140 km an hour there that morning and it was just after trying to catch him. I’m chasing a cop dinner that the call came in for the mass car, another cop car is chasing me. It evacuation and everybody needed to get must have been quite a sight for anyone out. So our nightshift guys, there’s only watching that. So, the other officer betwo of them, managed to get into work. hind me follows all the way to the hotel Come up north of town, like everyone that I was staying in. As I pulled up to else was south of the (Athabasca) river, the hotel, I’m thinking to myself, ‘How so they had to evacuate the other way. am I going to do this?’ because my keys So it was only the two guys who came were actually still in my hotel room. I’d into work on the Tuesday night. So, forgotten to mention that point to them. basically, we worked the day shift, the [with a chuckle] So, I showed the officer night shift and the following day shift, where my truck was. He said, ‘Alright, just to allow Suncor to finish what they get your keys and get out of here.’ I said were doing, so we could finish up what ‘Okay, I just have to get into the hotel we had to do for them. And then, as soon room to get them.’ He said, ‘Oh…okay. as we were done, they took us over to How are you going to accomplish that?’ their camp across from the site there PHOTO USED WITH PERMISSION FROM FORT MCMURRAY FIRE PICTURES FACKBOOK GROUP I told him I had a key for the back door. and they kept us there the Wednesday The edge of Fort McMurray continued to smolder after the fire has worn a path Like, my room key works for the back night and the Thursday night. A couple of door. So I tried that and the back door through the region. the guys that I’d worked with had flown opened. So I went in and tried my room out or gone north to try and catch the flights out. But key and it wouldn’t work. So, [the officer] said to me, ‘I I stayed, because I had my vehicle there in town and if guess you’ll have to head back north.’ I said ‘There is Travelling through an abandoned city there was any way possible, I wanted to check on my one other option.’ He said ‘What’s that?’ I told him that While waiting in the convoy, a news report over the vehicle. See if it [was still operational] and then use it radio indicated that RCMP would under no circumI’d been after the maintenance guys for a couple weeks to get home. Basically, to fix the screen in my window, cause it was partway stances at all, allow As soon as that wind changed on I was just waiting for dislodged. I said, ‘If you will follow me around, I’m on anyone to leave the [Highway 63] to open ground floor. And you can watch me attempt to get convoy to go check on Tuesday and the size of the fire was anything. It suggested the up.” through the window and get my keys and all’s good. He Over the next 24 that much bigger, that sense of relief that there was going to just started laughing. Then he just said, ‘Alright, let’s hours, Ferguson found go [around to the window].’ So he looks at the window be a police car in the just disappeared and everyone began front of the convoy, first and looks over at me. The window at the hotel was himself waiting to get the go-ahead to travel only like 18 inches wide by five inches deep. It’s just a one in the middle to fear the worst. back towards the city. small sliding window. He looks at me and I’m like 6’2” and one behind and Once he received the and 230 pounds. He looks at me, looks at the window, a helicopter overhead Blair Ferguson okay, though, it was still a difficult trek. looks at me, looks at the window. He says, ‘You really watching the highway. “I think it was around four o’clock [on Friday mor- If anyone attempted to leave the convoy, they would think you’re going to get in there?’ And I said to him, ning] when I heard a knock at the door. They said, be arrested. That left Ferguson with a difficult decision ‘Do you see this look of determination on my face? This ‘The camp is being evacuated. If you are not essential to make. What followed was a very interesting turn of look says that I can see my keys and I know my truck services, helping with the maintenance or firefighters, events, that Ferguson will not soon forget. is good. I will get in this window.’ we’re moving everyone out of here. So there was going Continued on page 11 “So I’m sitting there thinking ‘Oh [expletive]’, be-

be a convoy going through town this morning. So, if you have a vehicle and you want to get into the convoy, fine. Or, we’ll have buses here to take you north.’ Now I had no intention of leaving Fort McMurray without my truck. If it was still there and in one piece, I wanted my truck. So, I got into the convoy and I’m sitting there, waiting in the line. It was a case of sitting for 20 minutes, because it was just a case that they were only taking a few vehicles at a time. You’d sit for 20 minutes and then move maybe 100 feet, then sit there in the same spot for another 20 minutes. So I sat in the convoy for maybe two hours before I got up close to the front.”

Neepawa Natives launch Harves

Neepawa Press Looking Back 1976: Neepawa Rotary Club celebrates its 25th anniversary NEEPAWA, MB. Aug 19, 2015 - A new initiative from the Neepawa Natives junior ‘A’ hockey club is reaching out to the region’s agricultural industry. Harvest for Hockey is a project where local farm families are being asked to donate a portion of their crop to help support the operations of the club. As part of the donation, all participating farmers and their immediate families would be recognized on signage at the Yellowhead Arena, as well as online on the team website. The Neepawa Natives are also planning a Harvest for Hockey game night early in the 20152016 MJHL regular season, where the club would recognize its contributors and extend a free gate admission of up to six tickets to all of the participating Harvest for Hockey farmers and farming families.

Week of May 18, 2016 By Cecil Pittman The Neepawa Press

80 years ago Tuesday, May 19, 1936 M. Baronie and J. M. Fusee left Friday for Saskatoon to attend a convention of the National Parks Highway Association. It is the aim of the association to foster the move of having the transcontinental highway through Neepawa, Dauphin, Roblin, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Jasper, Kamloops, Chilliwack and Vancouver. 70 years ago Thursday, May 16, 1946 It has been announced by the Great-West Life Assurance Company that their local representative, E. W. Poole, who serves the company’s policyholders in this district, has again qualified for membership in the honour production club. The club is composed of leading life underwriters of the company throughout Canada and the United States. 60 years ago Thursday, May 17, 1956 Fifty-one boys and girls have been registered to start school at West Park in September, it was reported by school officials. This number is the same as had registered when the list was published in the Neepawa Press one year ago. The present enrollment in Grade 1 is 66 and this year’s total number is not expected to be above 70. 50 years ago Tuesday, May 17, 1966 Dr. Patrick Domegan, formerly of Dublin, Ireland, has arrived with his wife and family to make their home in Neepawa. Dr. Domegan will practice medicine here, after residing in three western Canada centres since 1960. Born in Dublin, he graduated from the Na-

Natives board member Cam Tibbett said that within nerships the next few days, farms within a 20 kilometre radius positive of Neepawa will receive a letter outliningMAY the Harvest 18, 2016 but 3 also for Hockey concept. thrive in The c “This is something the team is very excited about. We’ve mailed out details to farms across the region. Harvest Neepawa and surrounding area has a vibrant farming farmers community, so it’s very important for the team to ex- of bush was rectified. Lee added plore options for making partnerships with farmers,” team wi the purchase of the weed said Tibbett. the farm cutter exemplifies the Team general manager Mylesapathy. Cathcart“When said it’sthe very amount Weed important for the hockey team Witch to establish a stronger became available, If any connection to the region’s agricultural Hockey no one base. would take on the “The area has a strong farming heritage tions, th project, so [theand Lakethe Irwin] Neepawa Natives are looking forward to making part-it.”841-306 board had to finance NEEPAWA PRESS R0011063026




40 years ago Thursday, May 20, 1976 Neepawa Rotary Club marked the 25th anniversary Saturday night with a social evening at the Legion Hall. District governor D. A. “Biff” Crouch and his wife, Lucille, of Regina were present for the occasion. Charter President George MacKidd, assisted by the district governor and club president Elmer Wiebe, cut a large birthday cake. John Kerr, a longtime member of the club, was master of ceremonies and gave a resume of club

activities over the past 25 the development of Lake years. Jack Thomas had on Irwin as a major tourism display clippings from the stop over. “We are standing at the Neepawa Press and other mementos, which drew crossroads and the choice is operating a campground much interest. C h a r t e r m e m b e r s in 1986, or dismantling it present were George Mack- and putting it into mothKidd, Angus McDougall, balls,” said the Lake Irwin Jack Thomas, Roy Birnie, Park Community Centre Al Schulman and Bill District Board Chairman annual dinner Guinn. I N L E Y during H the OM SON ✦ ✦ meeting of the Chamber C HARTERED A CCOUNTANTS I NC . May 7. 30 years ago Outlining the history of Thursday, May 15, 17 Dennis St. W. P. O. Box 70 287-A Hamilton St. P. O. Box 267 the development of1H0 Lake 1986 Gladstone, MB R0J 0T0 Neepawa, MB R0J Telephone: (204) 385-2570 (204) 476-3941 Irwin, Lee remarked, since Guest speaker Bruce Telephone: Fax: told 83 members (204) 385-2863 (204)first 476-3793 the lake was creLee of Fax: ated by damming in 1958, the Neepawa Chamber email: of Commerce, apathy is through the ‘60s and ‘70s, a greatest hindrance to it had become a popular



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recreation area, but in the late ‘70s and ‘80s, people’s attitudes changed. This change came at a time of low water when warmer water temper atures and runoff of chemical from adjacent farmers’ fields began to promote the growth of weeds. The weeds discouraged use of the facilities, but a Weed Witch Harvester (to cut the weeds) was purchased and the problem




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10 years ago Monday, May 15, 2006 Local man dies in house fire: A 63-year-old Neepawa man was found dead in his Mountain Avenue home Thursday afternoon, an apparent victim of a house fire. RCMP said Nester Wisnoski was found in his home about 1:00 pm by a family member. There was extensive smoke damage in the house, leading police to believe Wisnoski died of smoke inhalation. An autopsy is scheduled to determine the exact cause of death.

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40 years ago; Thurs., May 20, 1976: George MacKidd was elected Charter President of the Neepawa Rotary Club. tional Medical College and came to Canada after following his profession for a time in that city. He first came to Saskatchewan and lived in Regina and Gainsborough before moving to Elkhorn, MB in 1962. Dr. Domegan is married and has two sons and two daughters: Tom, 5, John, 3, Deirdre, 2, Clodagh, 1.

20 years ago Monday, May 21, 1996 Building permits indicate Neepawa is on the verge of its biggest building boom since the late 1980s, says Hartley Wilson of the Neepawa Area Planning District. “It is a building boom, I’m not kidding,” said Wilson last week. “January, February and March were totally dead and the last month has just exploded.” Wilson said despite higher lumber prices, permits for new housing and housing additions now stand at 10-double the number at the same time last year.

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Neepawa Press Opinion

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Owners/Publishers Ken and Chris Waddell Editor Kate Jackman-Atkinson Sales John Drinkwater Jean Seaborn Sandra Unger News Staff Eoin Devereux Kira Paterson Production Staff Diane Ruzycki Accounts Kay De’Ath

CONTACT 243 Hamilton Street, Box 939, Neepawa, Manitoba R0J 1H0 Telephone: (204) 476-2309 Fax: (204) 476-5073 Toll-free: 1-888-436-4242 Email addresses News: Office supplies or print jobs: Advertising:

Circulation Published every Wednesday Ad deadline: Thursday Noon prior to issue date Verified circulation CCNA November 30, 2015: 4,138

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MLAs need to reform their pensions Leaders have to lead by example, especially in a time of tough choices. Newly elected MLAs need to show leadership by fixing their pension plan. It’s not just about the amount of money they get at retirement, although that’s worth talking about as well. It’s about the structure of Manitoba’s pension plans. It’s an issue worth billions, and fixing it needs to start with elected officials. Here are some of the numbers. Former Progressive Conservative MLA Stuart Briese retired before the election and we estimate his pension will be worth about $15,000 per year for a total of $299,000 until age 90. NDP MLA Dave Chomiak lost his seat, but we estimate he’ll get $64,000 a year for a total of $1.7 million. Fellow NDP MLA Steve Ashton will get an estimated $86,000 a year for a total of $2.5 million. Those pension payouts aren’t the biggest issue – it’s the amount those MLAs paid in. MLAs have a defined benefit pension. They pay in seven per cent of their salaries. Then, when they retire, they get specific payouts based on their salaries and years of service. If their contributions don’t cover their payments, it doesn’t matter, they still get their money and taxpayers are left to cover the shortfall. For most of us, the amount we can take out of our RRSPs or pensions depends on what we put in and how well those investments performed. That type of plan is called a defined contribution pension. It’s the reason people are careful to make sure they’re saving enough and watching their investments closely. We don’t know how much taxpayers may have to pay to top up MLA pensions because the previous government refused to release that information. But the province’s total pension liabilities are concerning. The province estimates it will have to pay retired government employees $8.4 billion. But there’s only $6.1 billion in the pension funds. That means taxpayers are on the hook for a $2.3 billion shortfall. That’s about $1,824 per Manitoban. Even worse, the numbers are going in the wrong direction –

Manitoba’s unfunded pension liability is going up by more than $100 million per year. And Manitoba isn’t the only place facing this problem – Statistics Canada reports that governments across the country put a combined $18.1 billion of taxpayers’ money into underfunded pension plans in 2012. How does this happen? The reality is that it’s virtually impossible to plan for retirements that will happen decades from now. People are living longer and therefore drawing more payments than the planners thought they would. And the investments haven’t always grown as fast as hoped. But the bottom line is that taxpayers are on the hook for any failures in the crystal ball. And because of that, nearly every government employee pension plan in Canada is underfunded. Eventually, we’re going to have to deal with the huge liabilities connected to defined benefit pension plans. Of course, Manitoba has a lot of financial problems to address. The operational deficit is $773 million. The net debt is more than $21 billion. It cost $842 million just to cover the annual interest on the debt. So reforming government employee pension plans is just one item on a long to-do list. But this issue is going to keep coming up. Presumably, the new government’s commitment to openness will mean previously undisclosed details of the MLA pension plan will come to light. This issue will surface again when former premier Greg Selinger retires and his considerable pension is calculated. And, of course, MLA pensions will be an issue at election time in four years. Eventually, MLAs will have to tackle pension reform. It’s hard to do that while they have a defined benefit pension plan themselves. Now is the time for MLAs to sign on to a pension plan that pays out based on what goes in so that we can start fixing the plans for all government employees. Todd MacKay, Prairie Director, Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Letters to the Editor

Pipeline debate needs a dose of common sense

The debate over pipelines is in serious need of a heavy dose of common sense. Farmers, like the First Nations, have to be fully involved in the debate. Moving oil and gas long distances is a necessity in an area as large as North America. Pipelines are clearly the best option. It is true they are disruptive during the construction phase and for a time afterwards. Farmers need to be compensated for the damage to soil until it can be returned to full fertility. Plus compensation for rights of way that need to be maintained on a permanent basis for service and maintenance. But when you put that alongside the cost of railways and highways and the disruption of trains and trucks, pipelines come out a clear winner by a long shot. Animals, both domestic and

wild, can graze freely over a pipeline. Check the ditches along any rail line or major highway and you soon see how many animals fall victim to our modern transportation systems. Roads and railways must run through urban areas because of the other services they provide. Pipelines can cross hundreds of miles of wilderness. First Nations, like farmers, have a legitimate concern about the disruption of pipelines across traditional lands. But those concerns have been exacerbated by the failure of politicians and industry to involve them in route planning as well as failure to include them in the employment available in the building and the maintenance of the infrastructure. Reports of pipeline leaks going undetected for

days and weeks could easily be avoided if the First Nations and farmers are fully involved in the maintenance. The worst possible pipeline break could never cause a catastrophe like Lac Megantic. First Nations’ concern about the pressure put on politicians to approve the demands of industry are understandable. They have been cheated and ignored and

lied to for so long. And it is still going on. Two years to build a 25 kilometre road so a First Nation can finally get clean water after 18 years of having to boil water? What nonsense! If General Motors or IBM needed a 25 kilometre road to service a new plant, it would be built in six months. Henry Heald, Ottawa freelance journalist

Thumbs up, thumbs down Would you like to send a thumbs up or thumbs down to an individual or group in the community? Please send it our way. Submissions must include a name and must be under 100 words. We want to hear from you! In person: 243 Hamilton St. Neepawa By fax: 204-476-5073 By email:


A week full of celebrations for HAND

A decoration piece made for the occasions featured cut out shapes of birds, hands and hearts with different services HAND has offered over the years written on each shape.


The Hims sang some old classics and invited everyone who knew them to sing along. The group was invited to be part of the celebration at the 30th anniversary dinner.

By Kira Paterson The Neepawa Press A local organization has been offering a helping hand to seniors for 30 years now. Home Assistance Neepawa and District (HAND) celebrated 30 years since their first annual meeting on Wednesday, May 11 – the first meeting was in April of 1986. When it first started, the organization was the second seniors assistance program in Manitoba. Now, there are about 104 programs like HAND in the province. The celebration was a roast beef dinner with the congregate meal clients. All past and present board members and HAND workers were invited to attend, as well as Neepawa Mayor Adrian de Groot and Trish Hunter, representing the Prairie Mountain Health RHA. Before the meal was served, local choral group, The Hims, sang a few numbers, encouraging all in attendance to sing along to the old favourites. HAND took the anniversary meal as an opportunity to thank all the workers, board members and volunteers who have helped over the years, as well as the organizations and community members who have supported them. There have been approximately 50 board members over the years that have helped run the organization. That Friday, HAND also recognized Let No One Be Alone (LNOBA) awareness week. At the congregate meal that day, they had some information about the LNOBA initiative, which aims to make sure seniors and people living on their own are not left alone. HAND also invited Elsie Bell, who plays piano for the residents at Country Meadows regularly, to entertain the guests before the meal.

Mayor Adrian de Groot visited with some of the regular clients of the HAND congregate meal program during the 30th anniversary celebration on May 11.

Eleanor Cochrane, one of the original board members of HAND, had the honour of cutting the anniversary cake.


Elsie Bell, who plays the piano regularly for Country Meadows residents, entertained the crowd at the LNOBA celebration dinner on May 13. She brought a list of familiar tunes and played them all by memory.


My Neepawa

Left: The Stone Angel that stands watch over Riverside Cemetery in Neepawa. PHOTO BY JODI BAKER

Above: The sanctuary of St. Dominic’s Church at 416 1st Avenue, Neepawa. PHOTO BY JOSE DINDO PASCUAL

What’s “Your Neepawa”? We’re asking readers to share with us their pictures of past and present Neepawa. To share a picture, please email a high resolution version (1 MB or higher) to or stop by the office at 243 Hamilton Street, in Neepawa. Please include your name as well as a description of the photo.

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Neepawa Press Sports

8 MAY 18, 2016

Neepawa Tigers set the pace at track and field event By Eoin Devereux The Neepawa Press

Several athletes from Neepawa Area Collegiate Institute (NACI) found themselves at or near the top of podium at the Neepawa Senior Invitational Track and Field Championship. The event was held on Friday, May 13 and featured some of the best young competitors from high schools across western Manitoba. Notable results for NACI included: Junior Varsity Girls Zoie Forgue won the Junior Varsity Girls 100 metre dash with a time of 13.21 seconds. She collected a second victory in the 200 metre dash, securing a winning time of 28.45. seconds. As well, Forgue finished second in the 400 metre run. Abbey McLead earned a second place nod in the 1,500 metre junior varsity run, with a time of 6:43.81, and a third place finish in the 3,000 metre, with a time of 14:27.15. Kara Ellis took home second place in Junior Varsity Girls High Jump with a final jump of 1.35 metres. Vicky Elgert earned a victory in the J.V. Girls Triple Jump, with a winning jump of 8.55 metres. Taryn McConechy won the J.V. Girls Javelin Throw (600g) with an impressive 25.40 metre throw in the finals. She also placed second in the J.V. Girls Shot Put (4kg) with a throw of 8.34 metres. Varsity Girls Chelsea Plett earned the top spot in the Varsity Girls 400 metre dash, with a time of 1:10.55. She also finished second in the Long Jump, with a 3.68 metre jump. Plett, along with teammates Robyn Birch, Emily Dobson and Emma Salmon also won the 4x100 metre relay, recording a winning time of 58.65. Salmon earned individual glory with a first place finish in the high jump. She, along with Jenna Rystephanuk of Strathclair, tied for first with 1.25 metre jumps. Salmon’s impressive day was capped off with a third place result in the Varsity Girls Discus throw (20.62m)

Junior Varsity Boys NACI’s Taine Middleton proved to be fast on his feet, winning the J.V. 100 metre (11.68 seconds) and finishing second in the 200 metre (27.69 seconds). A pair of Neepawa Tigers earned accolades in the J.V. 400 metre, as Ben Perrett finished first (55.68) and Ben Rainka wound up in third (1:02.49). Keith Hould of Rivers took second place. Perrett added another first place finish to his resume, with a victory in the 800 metre run, finishing with a time of 2:19.38. Tanner Mann claimed the top position in the J.V. Boys Long Jump, with a final jump of 5.16 metres. Mann added a second place finish in the Triple Jump (10.52 metres), but had to concede top spot to teammate Braden Gillies, who earned the victory with an impressive 10.65 metre jump. Gillies’ day at the top of the podium didn’t end there, as he also claimed the J.V. Boys Discus Throw (1.5kg), topping the rest of the field with a throw of 26.11 metres.

Varsity Boys NACI’s Dillan Neufeld outpaced his competition in the Varsity Boys 100 metre, taking the victory with a time of 12.08 seconds, while teammate Reese Jones was the victor in the 200 metre event, with a time of 25.54 seconds. Logan Russell finished in the third position of the 400 metre dash (1:02.83). He added a second third place finish, this time in the 800 metre event. A pair of Neepawa Tigers finished on the podium in the 100 Metre Hurdles, as Ram Ignacio finished first (17.74 seconds) and Bain deKoning followed in second (26.11 seconds). DeKoning would team with Landon Young, Reese Jones and Dillan Neufeld to take the 4x100 metre relay, finishing with a time of 50.64 seconds. In the Javelin Throw (700g) Dylan Oshanyk of Neepawa claimed second spot with a final throw of 34.68 metres.


Tanner Mann of NACI competing in the Long Jump competition during the Neepawa Senior Invitational.


Dillan Neufeld puts in a solid effort in the shot put. Though he did not medal in this event, he did prove to be the best of a very competitive field in the 100 metre, winning first place in the Varsity Boys.

Zone Seven Sports Schedule Recent Games: Varsity Boys Zone Seven Baseball William Morton Warriors 12-8 Neepawa Tigers (Tuesday, May 10) MacGregor Mustangs 11-6 Carberry Cougars (Tuesday, May 10)

Varsity Girls Zone Seven Fast-Pitch Neepawa Tigers 19-12 William Morton Warriors (Tuesday, May 10) Upcoming Schedule: Varsity Boys Zone Seven Baseball Carberry Cougars at Neepawa Tigers (Tuesday, May 17. 5:30 pm) Neepawa Tigers at MacGregor Mustangs (Thursday, May 19. 5:30 pm) Varsity Girls Zone Seven Fast-Pitch Carberry Cougars at Neepawa Tigers (Wednesday, May 18. 5:00 pm)


Emma Salmon competes in the discus throw. She finished third in that event, but was first in the Varsity Girls high jump.


Cats TNR and Rescue shopping day a success Looking Back Page 6 • September 2, 2015 •

e 6 • September 2, 2015 •

Looking Back: Week ooking Back: Week of September 2 A variety of vendors had tables set up at the Yellowhead Hall for the Cats TNR shopping day. By Kira Paterson The Neepawa Press

On Saturday, April 30, the Cats TNR & Rescue organization held their second annual Mother’s Day Shopping Expo at the Yellowhead Hall. The event is a fundraiser to help pay for the veterinary bills for the cats the group rescues. Vendors paid for a table at the event, with the money going directly to Cats TNR. There was also a small admission fee for shoppers and a barbecue lunch for sale that supported the organization. Some of the vendors also donated a portion of their sales that day. Linda Desjardins, one of the founders of the Neepawa organization, said that this year went a lot better than the first. “We’re pretty happy with the response,” she

From candles, to clothes, to cookware and more, there were lots of ideas for Mother’s Day gifts at the annual Cats TNR and Rescue Mother’s Day Shopping Expo on Apr. 30.

noted. She added that last year they didn’t have as many people come as they would’ve hoped because very few even knew about the event. But this year, she said they did a lot more advertising, which helped get the word out. Last year, Desjardins said they raised about $3,000 and they were hoping to either match or surpass that number this year. She said that the vendors are always so generous and it’s good to see a strong turnout to reward the vendors for helping with their cause. Over the three years Cats TNR & Rescue has been running, they have rescued over 200 cats, with most of those getting adopted and some being vetted and released. Right now, they have 16 cats in foster homes, waiting to be adopted permanently.

S h a n n o n Boersma and Diane Tilley helped out at the barbecue, grilling burgers and hot dogs to sell to raise some extra cash for Cats TNR. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

More optimism in the Neepawa business community

four part time and three pawa’s local businesses are growth and consumers participating in a Business beneficial for the majority casual or seasonal employ- expecting to be around for shopping elsewhere, was After 5. Four of the busi- of businesses, according a close third with seven nesses that participated in to the survey results. They ees. Seventy-five per cent a while yet. the survey said they would will also look at opportunWhen asked what the responses. The Neepawa Chamber said they don’t foresee any The survey asked if the be interested in this event, ities to arrange something of Commerce sent out a changes in the number business’ primary market business survey in Febru- of workers, while about was (i.e. local, regional, Chamber of Commerce while 17 said they would to help businesses with like moreArchives information business planning and ary of this year and recently seven per cent said they provincial or other), the should hold local political Photo Cecil Pittman In the “good old” days Neepawa’s Canada Day baseball events attracted five to six tho succession planning. about it. forums before elections majority answered regionare expecting a decrease, released the results. Overys Neepawa’s Canada Day baseball events attracted five to six thousand people. 14 senior baseball teams and the famous JJ Casey shows were the big attractions. is optimism in Compiling the informaall, the results of the survey either because of layoffs or al, meaning the Westman happen. Almost 57 per ions. indicate that Neepawa’s retirements, and approxi- area, with the next high- cent said they would like tion, what the Chamber the“There business community thatit wasn’t there last year,” through the and local businesses are cur- mately 18 per cent say they est in local, being just the a forum before munici- found70out years ago is expected the Miss Cecil Pittman survey was athe kind of Crewe noted, concluding pal elections, just underchinery, Neepawa area. In are planning to hire more. rently 70 stabilizing or grow- and cutting swath Sneath said that such years ago Mitchell is2015, fromthe Mr.By it is expected the Miss Thursday September course will be in opera- Gran that that was the biggest events 41 per cent said “yes” toof seminars highest response wasshe local, statements Last year saw similar Grandview, ing and most responses course Looking back damage6,and south of they tion of attitudes Thursday September where will bea very in opera1945 has next July 1. thing that the Chamber should be looking at organprovincial and about 38 suggesting that the busiresponse. were similar to, or better to Gladstone 6, 1945 has been teaching for should be made by all Neepawa tion next July 1. Stu Forsman, Murtwo y Hosting a political noticed from the results of per cent said “yes” for alast izing. nesses areMrs. reaching farther affected The businesses were two than, year’s. Tuesday. parties before Stulast Forsman, Muryears. Sumner 80 years ago ray’s Garage, has left is fro 50 years ago forum the next mu- the survey. forum. After now. The third highest they are isout ThereGarage, was an increase of asked50whether thebefore storm, which hearingselection commence ray’s has left from Mentmore, and thefederal years ago Tuesday September 3, for Flint, Michigan to at-be Friday September 3, has t nicipal election would The businesses were able this year was other, with planning to stabilize, ex50 per cent in the response r 3, for Flint, Michigan to atfrom one-andindication dumped has taught for six years to give a clear Friday September 3, 1935 at Gl 1965 to more than tend a two weeks course rate from last year – 46 pand or downsize in the the responses described to say “yes” to twobyinches of their position. tend a two weeks course at Glenburney School. 1965 When the babbitt heone-half sponsored General Neepawa’s two eleThirty-two per cent per cent of the businesses next three years. This year, as “Canada, US, overseas”, one. t he sponsored by General in half hour Neepawa’s two elepouring sprayedof rain Motors for an automotive mentary schools opened said “no” to all elections. Chamber emailed just over 71 per cent said “North America”, “Asia” was 16053TM0 ayed the cleared, property owners 30 years ago Motors for automotive 40 years ago mentary schools opened blew into his face,a service managers. Thu their doors Wednesday The Chamber hosts filled out the survey. The they’re planning to stabil- and “larger trade area and ace, service managers. September September doorsalmost Wednesday Arthur G. Curtis called suf-were left to survey the networking event of Neepawa, it’s not just Thursday ize, while 29 per Thursday businesses ranged in age their for this fall term, with suf- from only three months of for worst hail 5, 4, 1975 term, with Business After 5, wheredamage of a 1985 painful accident it’s not West- fered centthis planfall to expand. This local and 60the years ago A about 635 students regdent operation storm in years. The Roxy Theatre and 60 years ago A statement by the about 635 students rega business the up to over 100 was one major difference man either”. The lowest Sunday whichinvites may have Thursday September Mani istering. have years Drive-In TheThursday September elevators Neepawa istering. Chamber out for a tour of responsePool was provincial. from 2015 and a positive Manitoba running. serious consequences. 8, 1955 Both schools have presi nces. 10 years ago are facilities both up for sale, 8, 1955 H. B.asked Sneath, Both schools have24 president, their and to meet The survey what, atreOne at that. Last year, Marilyn Crewe, Nee- one eyeball was burnt Gladstone will again some new staff mem- has urnt pawa’s September 5, Donhours, Zaba,sets Gladstone willdevelopagain some included the of CNR newsaid staff memtheowner staff after as aMonday from a choice five, says per cent they were has economic and if in ammation have its own golf course bers, and both have new line b sets ment the future of have its own golf course Russell and leaving and both chance to let the the Chamber is between the biggest business stabilizing, 29have per new cent line officer, said that bers, in he may lose sight after a2005 period of several principals. Ted Witoski Neep ight the nine-member inshowings afterrise a period of several and businesses south to public Ted looking Witoskito Neepawa, get it. tomovie know business. issue. Nine said they were in response rate principals. of The the other eyelid Ayears, according to reis principle of Kelling- the ju yelid was Neepawa in aterim board of directors years, according to She re- is junction of the main in and principle They have hanging done it with said human resources, expand and of a Kellingwhopping the very significant. his forehead were ports from that town. ton School, replacing line a were noted businesses faraandwas appointed Thursday including hiring, training thefew 48 per cent were planning line showstown. that ton lurch, at leastsofor ports that fromit that as essential to mainSchool, replacing badly burnt also. He is The property comprises Miss Ruth Faryon, and tainin e is the the survey asked whoevening to oversee Budz and retention are the most while. to downsize. This, along Thebusiness property community comprises Miss a basic grain Ruth Faryon, and taining con nedbeto interested his home. in of 55 acres, three miles Dennis Paterson is the shipp would important. The next highwith responses in a later wants their voice heard and e. Zaba, interviewed by N Bloom daycare, after of 55 acres, three miles Dennis Paterson is the shipping network in the south of members the townofand new principal at Vis- provi est, with eight responses, telephone from his Red all but question indicating that province. itsouth will help thetown Chamber three of the and new principal at Viswill make a course Th said includ- Deer, Alberta home, said the previous board businessreplacing and succession provide for the needs of of count, re- of count, replacing Mrs. will make a course The operations, statement came Mrs. approximately 3,500 in re Slezak. inventory, planning are the most ining these businesses. 3,500 Slezak. approximately response to operational the an- business at the drive-in signed. yards with nine holes. noun New staff members costs and growth are imimportant topics in which The businesses that The resignations took yards with nine holes. New staff members nouncements of the and downtown theatre portant. Then, community businesses need include training, dates Work willmonths begin shortly responded an average at Kellington include dates after of Work willhad begin shortly at for hearings before was “slow all the way place Kellington challenges, which involves suggest that most of Neeof 40 full time employees, Miss Miss Dianne Mitchell, the between Dianne Mitchell, the Hall Commission, around” during the past wrangling By Kira Paterson The Neepawa Press




L.B .B



Alcoholics Anonymous Meet every

Thursday, 8 p.m. Neepawa United Church Basement

grade 1 and Mrs. Elizabeth Sumner, grade 6.

set up to review rail-line abandonment proposals.

Dr. Gerard Murray ✦


418 Mountain Ave., Neepawa P. O. Box 70 287-A Hamilton St. P. O. Box 267 R0J 0T0 Neepawa, MB Available R0J 1H0 Evening Appointments

17 Dennis St. W. Gladstone, MB Telephone: Fax:

(204) 385-2570 (204) 385-2863

Telephone: Fax:



(204) 476-3941 (204) 476-3793


year, although the driveSOLICITORS in did its best in 1984 since269 Hamilton his purchase Street, Neepawa,of Man. both properties in 1975.

Charles D. Taylor, B.A., LL.B 20 years ago Michael Davids, B.A., LL.B Monday September 5,

Office Hours: 1995 to 4:30 Hail8:30 thea.m. size of p.m., golf Mondaygale-force to Friday balls and winds beat down on crops, buildings and ma-

Telephone 476-2336

board members and the daycare’s rst director Anna K. Gordon. Gordon also resigned. Thursday’s meeting to appoint an interim board was organized by the Neepawa Area Development Corporation, which spearheaded development of theUnited comNeepawa munityChurch daycare. Basement

Alcoholics Anonymous Meet every

Thursday, 8 p.m.

grade 1 and Mrs. Elizabeth Sumner, grade 6.

17 Dennis St. W. Gladstone, MB Telephone: Fax:

set up aban


C HARTERED A CCO P. O. Box 70 R0J 0T0 (204) 385-2570 (204) 385-2863

287-A H Neepaw Telepho Fax:

email: ithomson.ktica@



‘I want to be there. I want to help’ Continued from page 2

So, he stood there and watched me squirm in. I think it was just a case at that point for him of ‘This I gotta see.’ It took some wiggling, but I managed to get in there. He gave 20 minutes to pack up all my belongings and pack up my truck and follow me out of town. So I would like to give a big thank you to him and to the corporal as well. They didn’t need to help me with any of that. They went above and beyond when it came to me. But I’m sure, after the week they had, the story of me crawling through that window probably gave him something to chuckle about with his fellow officers, after it was all said and done,” Ferguson said with a chuckle. As Ferguson drove his own vehicle away from the hotel and out of Fort McMurray, he noted that the scene was quite eerie. “All this happened after the city was evacuated, so the streets were empty. Basically, it was a ghost town. But at the same time, you could only see three or four car lengths in front of you, because the smoke right through town was just so thick. You couldn’t make out anything. It looked like a war zone but still strangely quiet,” said Ferguson. “As I drove away, I honestly didn’t know if I would ever see the city again, or even if there would even be any city left. In the suburbs, you just couldn’t see, because it was a cloud of smoke covering everything. The part of the city where I was at, in Gregoire, was pretty much intact at that time. But just across the highway, that section was just gone. So, I don’t know what to expect whenever I go back. All I could see was devastation, where I was.” Reflecting on the disaster, Ferguson praised the front line responders, who worked so tirelessly to ensure that the impact of the fire on Fort McMurray was not much worse, “The job that the first responders, the firefighters and the police have done. Trying to make sure anyone got out of there safely, which is miracle in itself, because Fort McMurray has one highway coming in and one highway going out. And you have 70,000 people trying to flee the city on one highway. It could have been much worse than it was.” Ferguson noted that even though it may be several months before he’s called back to work, he’d still like to return to Fort McMurray as soon as possible to assist in any way with bringing some sense of normalcy back to the city. “I’ve been told by the company that I work for that we probably won’t be back to work for another four months. So, I just want to get out there. I have friends who have lost everything. Co-workers who have lost everything,” said Ferguson. “I’m hoping to get back there as part of the clean up effort or whatever. First opportunity, if I can, I want to be there. I want to help.”


As the clean up effort around the suburbs of Fort McMurray begins to get underway. Ferguson hopes to get back out to the region soon to assist in that effort in any way he can.



Neepawa Press Classifieds

12 MAY 18, 2016

–––––––––– Yard Sale

TOWNWIDE YARD SALE, May 28, as part of the Neepawa Fair. To register your sale, contact the Chamber office at 476-5292

–––––––––– For Sale

NEEPAWA NATIVES Junior A Hockey Club season tickets, earlybird price $199; coupon books (over $700 in value), $20; 2015-16 hockey card sets, limited number still available from the second printing, $10. Available at the Neepawa Banner, 243 Hamilton St. 9a.m.-4 p.m.

Manitoba Community Newspaper Association Province-wide Classifieds FOR SALE

Advertisements and statements contained herein are the sole responsibility of the persons or entities that post the advertisement, and the Manitoba Community Newspaper Association and membership do not make any warranty as to the accuracy, completeness, truthfulness or reliability of such advertisements. For greater information on advertising conditions, please consult the Association’s Blanket


Cheryl and Colin Bialkoski announce with great pride and joy the arrival of Lila Marie, born February 15, 2016 in Kelowna at 1:31 a.m., weighing 6 lbs. 14 oz. Proud grandparents are Bob and Cathy Elphick of Winnipeg, along with Joe and Marie Bialkoski of Polonia, MB, and greatgrandmother Valerie Bialkowski of Winnipeg. Lila enjoys eating, having baths, going to the beach and smiling.

Advertising Conditions on our website at BATTERIES FOR EVERYTHING. Automotive, farm, construction, ATV, marine, motorcycle, golf carts, phones, tools, radios, computers etc. Reconditioned, obsolete and hard-to-find batteries. SOLAR equipment. The Battery Man. Winnipeg. 1.877.775.8271 w w w. b a t t e r y m a n . c a PROVINCE-WIDE CLASSIFIEDS. Reach over 400,000 readers weekly. Call this newspaper NOW or email classifieds@ for details. SAWMILLS from only $4,397 - MAKE MONEY & SAVE MONEY with your own bandmill -Cut lumber any dimension. In stock ready to ship. FREE Info & DVD: 1-800-566-6899 Ext:400OT. TRUCKLOAD MATTRESS SALE! May 6th to June 5th. $389 double or queen pillow top mattress set. $599 Simmons Beautyrest queen set (tight top model). $699 Simmons Beautyrest 3 inch pillowtop queen set. King pil-

low top mattress sets starting at $695. Twin 8 inch spring system mattresses starting at $169. All advertised specials in stock and ready for delivery or pickup. Mon-Fri 10-8, Sat 10-6 & Sun 12-5. Call KDL Furniture at 204-571-1971. 660 Highland Ave., South side of #1 Hwy., Brandon.


MANITOBA MOTORCYCLE RIDE FOR DAD – Fighting Prostate Cancer. Saturday, May 28, 2016, 10:00 A.M. Official Start. Polo Park Shopping Centre. Register online: LIVESTOCK FOR SALE Black Angus bulls for sale. Semen tested, guaranteed, reasonably priced. Volume discounts and delivery available. Section 7 Ranch Rocanville SK. (306) 645-2019 (306) 435-7811.


GET FREE VENDING MACHINES. Can Earn $100,000.00 + Per Year. All Cash-Locations Provided. Protected Territories.

Interest Free Financing. Full Details CALL NOW 1-866-668-6629 Website W W W. T C V E N D . C O M LAND FOR SALE SE ¼ of Sec. 25-36-28 and SW ¼ of Sec. 25-36-28. 320 acres of farmland in the Municipality of Swan Valley West. Land is fenced with 2 dugouts. Property is available immediately. Please contact seller for more information. 204-734-0964.


Discover amazing Yellowstone Park. Premium quality accommodations & transpiration. Guaranteed instant relaxation throughout with small group. Act now and insure your seat. or 204-770-7771.

RECREATIONAL PROPERTY Lake Living Made Affordable. Lake lots $44,900 and lakeview lots $15,900. Warren 204-856-3076. Open House & BBQ - May 21-22. 10 am - 5 pm.

Help Wanted

Business Opportunity

FOODS Meat Cutter/Production Personnel

Neepawa Tile Installer

HyLife Foods a division of the HyLife organization is engaged in the dressing and processing of hogs for both domestic and world markets. To reach and sustain its position as a premier supplier of quality food products it strives to employ talented and motivated people who are capable of reaching the cutting edge of their discipline. This position is based at the operations in the vibrant community of Neepawa, Manitoba which has a reputation for its beauty and Marble, Porcelain, Ceramic, high quality of life. Due to rapid growth we are looking for Meat Stone, Glass Tile Cutters/Production Personnel.

OPEN 24-7

The successful candidate should possess the following qualifications: • Be able to work in a culturally diverse workplace • Have a good work ethic • Focus on treating people with dignity and respect • Appreciate a stable long term work environment • Experience as an Industrial Butcher or trimmer is required • Completion of secondary school may be required

Got a news tip or an ad inquiry? You can call The Neepawa Press at any time! Our message centre is available. (204) 476-3401 Toll Free in Manitoba 1-888-436-4242

Current starting wage is $13.55/hour plus $1.00 per hour perfect attendance incentive! We offer a comprehensive benefits package and competitive compensation based on experience and knowledge. HyLife has been recognized as a Platinum Member of Canada’s Best-Managed Companies. If you have the qualifications and the passion to meet this challenge then we would like to explore your potential. Please apply online at

You can also email us! Visit us at

We thank all applicants, however, only those under consideration will be contacted.


STEEL BUILDING SALE...”SUPER SAVINGSADDITIONAL 10% OFF NOW!” 20X21 $5,794 25X25 $6,584 30X31 $9,600 32X3S $10,798 42X51 $16,496. One End wall included. Pioneer Steel 1-800-6685422 www.

If interested please contact Nick Jewell, or 204-638-6804.

ca/MT or 1-855-768-3362 to start training for your work-at-home career today!

MEDICAL TRANSCRIPTION! In-demand career! Employers have work-athome positions available. Get online training you need from an employer-trusted program. Visit: CareerStep.

4 New 16 x 80, 3 Bed, 2 Bath. Starting at $89,900. Altona Mobile Homes, 1-800582-4036, 1-204-324-6776 Email


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EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY Twin Motors Dauphin has an opening for a fulltime Automotive Sales Professional. A strong sales or marketing history is an asset but we are willing to train the successful candidate. This is an unique career opportunity for the right individual.


For Sale Located in downtown Neepawa: Three 4-drawer file cabinets-$100, several office desks-$25-$50, file baskets, new and used office supplies, paper and card stock up to 24 x 30 inches, large variety of envelopes by the box or smaller amounts. Come and pick what you need for your farm, business or home office and we’ll make package deal!

Phone: 204-476-6214 Classified Ad Deadline Tuesday Noon

Cancellations and corrections only within business hours and corresponding deadlines.

Services Guide Construction

Neepawa Tile Installer


Marble, Porcelain, Ceramic, Stone, Glass Tile

Responsibilities / Duties include but are not limited to: • Slaughter, eviscerate and mark hogs for further processing Sergej • Cut pork carcasses into primal cuts for further detailed specifications intended for commercial, industrial, institutional or wholesale use • To de-bone edible part and remove inedible organs or parts

35 lines



Sergej Adam Adam

Cell: 1-204-841-1608 Home Phone: 204-476-0690 Commerce 15, Neepawa, MB

- Telehandler and Skid Steer Rental



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Thursday Noon

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May 18, 2016 Neepawa Press