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Wednesday, February 27, 2019 | | Yorkton This Week

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SENIORS Our Monthly Feature

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They say you can’t experience something fully until you’ve experienced it first-hand. The fresh, new bus system with shorter routes is part of the City of Yorkton’s pilot program. So, Yorkton This Week decided to hop on one of the buses and experience the route ourselves. “I think having the two new buses is always nice,” said Mayor Bob Maloney. “The ride quality’s going to be a lot better. The biggest concern that came to my attention was that the routes take too long. I can understand that because apparently doing the route was like an hour. That’s too long when somebody’s trying to get to work or school.” “My understanding is that there are two loops and they take about 30 minutes, so if you can get where you’re going within half an hour, I think that’s a lot more reasonable, and hopefully it will encourage ridership.” Donald Cannon, our driver, is a familiar face

Donald Cannon, bus driver in Yorkton. to the riders. He has an easygoing manner and knows many of the passengers by name. “We have a north route and a south route. We have two routes, now. We run one bus at a time, and have a shift from roughly 6:45 to 12:30, the other’s from 12:30 to 7. “We couldn’t run simultaneously because the traffic was too much to allow us to do [it]. And, Yorkton city traffic one has to stay on their toes,” laughs Cannon. “I started driving in

2002. So, I’ve been here a large number of years. A lot longer I ever planned on,” jokes Cannon. Some of the passengers weigh in, too. Doug, a long time passenger, chimes in. “I like the system,” he says. “Gets me where I want to go. Beats walking in the cold.” Asked if the route change is an improvement, he shrugs. “Doesn’t make a huge difference for me because of where I’m going, but it really depends.” Another passenger gets on at Parkland Mall. Broadway St E She is chipper and amiable, but visibly irritated. Not at Cannon; she seems 9 to know him, but has a Come your Comemeet meet your ay few complaints. rW e personal pharmacist, s personal pharmacist, lli Pa “I wish there was a Tricia today. TriciaKlassen, Klassen, today. shelter here,” she said. Coffee Coffeeisison onus! us! While chatting with Hamilton Rd d dR Cannon, she asks himn 1717 - 259 Hamilton Rd, Yorkton Po - 259 Hamilton Rd, Yorkto ter who she can talk to to Pe Ph: 306-782-2000 Ph: 306-782-2000 give feedback about the transit system. He gives a name and the chatting continues back and forth. MedicineShoppe_2x28.c27_R0011588118.indd “I missed my bus the last time. Other driver 2x28L (4c) Seniors edt •YTW Feb 27, 2019 Stairlif ts just blew right past me. I guess he didn’t see me.” Free Estimates Cannon is incredueShoppe_2x28.c27_R0011588118.indd 1 2019-02-22 9:54 AM Prevents stair accidents lous. Mounts to steps “You mean he didn’t Straight or Curved stop?” “Nope. Just blew right In House Technician past me. Guess he didn’t see me.” 306-782-5545 Continued on Page A13 Mayhew Ave

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Yorkton This Week | | Wednesday, February 27, 2019

just for SENIORS



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Continued from Page A12 “He should have seen you,” Cannon offers helpfully. “I mean, we can see the stop. You’d be visible even with a snowbank in this vehicle.” The conversation trails off a little bit and turns into a spirited discussion on various food

2019-02-22 8:12 AM

stores and the quality of it, especially Save On Foods. All the riders agree the food quality is exceptional. “Except the fish area stinks,” she says. “It’s just rank.” Granted, fish are not the most aromatically popular of scents.

Other feedback comes floating back, too. Need to clear the snowbanks. Indeed, Stop 15, in front of Dairy Queen on Broadway was covered in snow. Areas with lesser traffic, one could certainly understand snow removal being a little late, but on Broadway?

Indeed, for a reporter in their early 30s who is also a runner, one can navigate a snowbank categorized at worst as mildly irritating. However, for passengers that have mobility issues due to health or age concerns, having to navigate snow

Relevant classes for seniors By Devin Wilger Staff Writer Parkland College has a question for area seniors. What classes are relevant to you? What do you want to learn? What areas of interest would you like to explore for a new program? Program coordinator Connie Brown is looking at what they can plan for the next year, and the best way to get a program offered is for people to show interest in the idea. The college already has programs that would be of interest to seniors. The Computing Basics program was developed with the assistance of the Yorkton New Horizons, with the intent of being a good way to get comfortable with computers, explained Brown. The next step of the program, an introduction to Microsoft Word, requires a bit of familiarity with computers, but is still pitched at that same market. That program is the next one up at the college, starting on March 22. “Computer training is something that we’ve done quite a bit of with seniors.” They find that it’s not the skills that are a barrier, but the terminology. For a lot of people, it’s wading into a foreign language, so they spend a lot of time in a relaxed environment to get comfortable with the machines and what they can do. “They might be scared or have never used a mouse before at the start, but at the end they are so proud.” After that point, the college also offers a wide range of online programs that cover a wide variety of topics that seniors could enjoy through Ed2Go. Brown said that after they get a handle on the basics of computers, everyone wants to go in a different direction, and they want the basics to go in a different direction later. “When someone is confident enough to do that on their own, it opens up a whole range of


on Broadway could be the difference between severe injury. We can’t all run a 10 minute mile, nor should we. Overall, though, the shortened routes are generally welcome. The bus has comfortable, cozy seats and has a feel somewhere between an airline limousine and a small bus. It’s bigger than a van, a tad smaller than a bus. The city is allowing riders to take the system for free in the month of February to see what needs to be done and to get feedback. The main loop is centrally located, near the Co-Op. It is easily located off Broadway. The stop I got on, in front of the Dairy Queen, was well located - on Broadway proper.

Still, though, being on a main thoroughfare, there is really no reason why there should be a giant snowbank right in front of the bus stop. Minus the aformentioned rogue snowbanks, though, the system is continually being measured, analyzed and changed in the hopes to improve. But that’s just our initial assessment. What do you think? That’s what we want to know. The Yorkton Transit system is free up to the end of February; as of press time you still have a few days to ride for the princely sum of $0. I want to know what you think about the Yorkton Transit system. Seriously. Have your say! Email me at ccarlick@

Did you know? Your Pharmacist can write you a prescription for a variety of minor ailments. Connie Brown, pictured above, is looking for feedback for what classes area seniors might want from Parkland College. opportunities.” But what about people who are not interested in computers? The college will also have a conversational Ukrainian course, starting on March 7. Brown views it as a way to connect with grandchildren, as it’s something someone could take to bridge the language gap between generations. But what else do seniors in the city want? The Parkland College wants to get a lot of use

out of the Trades and Technology Centre, and that means offering a wide variety of courses to Yorkton residents, but what courses to offer? Brown said that while they can partner with many different institutions to bring in a course and they are interested in meeting the needs of the community, they need to know what those needs are. If you have an idea for a course that would gen-

erate interest in the community, contact Brown at 306.786.7335 or c.brown@ She notes that courses will need to have at least six to eight student to go ahead, but they’re interested in community feedback and want to meet the needs of local seniors as they seek to continue a lifetime of learning.

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