Thursday, December 25, 2008

Ho, Ho, Ho! Merry Christmas!

The weather continues to be a 'bit on the chilly side'. Boy, that's no exaggeration!
Hope you are warm and enjoying a wonderful Christmas in your corner of the world.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Oh, the Weather Outside Was Frightful!

Brrr! 29 degrees below zero Celsius , not counting the windchill. We prairie folk have to be tough to live in this environment. Please take note that the pond is being aerated for the fish stock and is not safe for walking on!

December 13th Craft Sale

Despite the cold weather outside, there were a fair number of people out today to have a last chance at buying Christmas gifts and baking. A delicious lunch was provided by the crafters at the event.
The museum had a table selling their publications and sales items.
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Monday, November 10, 2008

Northwest Network Meeting

Noreen and Lucille attended the Northwest Network meeting at the Unity Museum on Saturday.
These meetings bring together museums in our region for communicating and sharing common issues. Also MAS (Museums Association of Saskatchewan) was represented by Wendy Fitch, Director of Museum Operation Services, who brought us up to date on what is happening on the provincial scene and the plans for the future.
It is always a benefit to talk to others who share common problems and successes. The need to fund raise always results in some new interesting ways to make money.
The day is too short for what needs to be accomplished. I guess we talk too much!
We finished the day by going through a few of the buildings in the Unity Museum. What a lovely museum! (Of course, I am a bit biased when it comes to small museums!) It amazes me what a group of volunteers can accomplish. Great work, Unity! Even the cold weather didn't stop us from enjoying.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Craft Sale Table

The Royal Purple Craft Sale was on Saturday afternoon and the museum had a table selling our publications and sales goods. Although the traffic was very light, we sold a fair number of items.
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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Interesting Photos Are Added to the Archives

We are moving our archival materials to the MAC this winter. Hopefully by organizing and storing them in a year round accessible building, research and future projects will be made a little easier to complete.
New photos of early Cut Knife residents have been recently donated and are being added to the digital collection. Included in these was a photo of an early business as well.
If you have any photos that you think may add to our pictoral record of the history of the area, we encourage you to let us add them to the archives.
We are also looking for photos of elevators of the Cut Knife area (Rockhaven, Wilbert, Newby, Tatsfield, Carruthers, Baldwinton, etc.) to complete a new display next summer.
Any information on Station Masters and Dray men would be appreciated.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Grant Writing...

We are in the middle of the annual grant writing marathon. It is not the most exciting task to complete, but in some respects, very satisfying. The task of looking back over the last year's accomplishments can be a good thing. It makes one truly realize the amount of work that is done at a small museum by our volunteers.

Instead of doing a total 'guess-timate' of the volunteer hours, we asked each of our volunteers to keep track of his/her hours. Our Volunteer Coordinator, our answering machine, and e-mail has been utilized to gather all of the statistics.

There has been an effort to write down all of the museum task/ job descriptions that our volunteers are asked to do. It is much easier to find a volunteer if the job is clearly described and there is a beginning and an end. There is a fear that once one falls into the bottomless pit of volunteerism at the museum, one is doomed to be there for life. There are examples where this has happened, so the fear was not unfounded.

Bravo to everyone who was brave enough to take on a task at our museum last year. We accomplished so much.

The total number of volunteer hours hasn't been tallied yet, but even the preliminary numbers are amazing!

There are a lot of other museums that are also grant writing, noting all of their volunteer hours, trying to present their museum in the best possible way, wishing they were doing anything but this activity, hoping that the results will be successful and profitable, and dreaming that next year's grants will be a little easier to write. Sigh....

Good luck to you all!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

New Park Additions

Two beautiful park benches have been added to Tomahawk Park. The Knights of Columbus/Catholic Women's League sponsored the one in front of the Duvall House. The Paziuk Family sponsored the one that is half way between the Tomahawk and the Duvall House along the new walking path.
Both were made and put in place by Rose City Memorials. Great work guys!

Take a walk in the park and rest awhile on the benches to enjoy the wonderful fall weather.

Also there are some new picnic tables in the campground.
These were constructed by dedicated volunteers.
Thanks Mel!

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Friday, September 19, 2008

Fall Happenings

The doors may be closed, but work is still being done at the museum.
Signage for the outside machinery display has been constructed.
The Duvall House exterior has had more work done. (The interior has had lots of painting over the summer. A tank for grey water was put into place. Thanks everyone!)
More new picnic tables have been constructed for the park.
The new archives area in the MAC has been started. This will bring our many resources of photographs, newspapers, books, and other paper archives in to a heated building where we (and the public) can access it year round.
Cataloguing many new artifacts has begun.
The paperwork that needs to be done to complete our commitment of summer employee grants has been worked on.
And we are beginning to complete the next round of grant application.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Week 2 Young Friends

The 6 to 8 year olds with some younger siblings visited Cut Knife Hill today as well as the site of the 1885 Battle of Cut Knife Creek.

Then we returned and made bannock over the campstove and ate it with the
raspberry jam that was made earlier in the week. Yum!

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Monday, August 4, 2008

Battle of Cut Knife Hill or How Cut Knife Got Its Name

Friday at Young Friends we acted out the story of the battle between the Cree and the Sarcee or "How Cut Knife Hill and the Town of Cut Knife Were Named".
A very brief summary of the story is as follows:
The battle took place about the 1850 - 60's when Chief Cut Knife/Broken Knife (depending upon translation from Cree) and a group of Sarcee came to attack the Cree settlement just north of the hill. They were discovered by the Cree and circled and killed except for some who returned to Alberta and reported the happenings. The Cree were impressed with the Sarcee Chief's bravery in battle and named the hill after him. When the European settlers were looking for a name for their settlement, they named it after the prominent hill just north of the townsite.
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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Siding for Duvall House

Lightning chased away a volunteer worker yesterday, but he was back on the job today!
The new siding makes the house look great!

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Tale of Two Battles

The Young Friends kids visited Cut Knife Hill today. They are climbing the old monument of the 1885 Battle that was put up on the wrong hill.

Also we visited real site of the 1885 Battle of Cut Knife Creek where Poundmaker is buried.

After returning to the museum, we made bannock. The raspberry jam that was made on Tuesday was a perfect complement to the bannock. (Some people like a little bannock with their jam!)
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Plant Scavenger Hunt on Wednesday

Young Friends kids on the Plant Identification Scavenger Hunt held on Wednesday. The day started out nice and sunny, but soon the rain clouds rolled in. Lightning and thunder didn't dampen the spirits of the kids. We just moved inside and played some inside games.
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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Young Friends of the Museum Day 1& 2

Day 1 was spent learning about our museum, having a scavenger hunt, playing traditional games such as jacks and marbles, and making a personal "Who I Am" poster for the museum archives.

Day 2 involved a rope making demonstration, examining examples of beadwork in the museum, making a simple beaded project, learning hopscotch, making raspberry jam, and learning the game of horseshoes.

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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Atton's Lake Book Launch

Tuesday evening, Atton's Lake Golf Club was an appropriate place to hold the launch of our newest publication, Atton's Lake, A Summer Meeting Place .
Over 40 people came to be the first to see and purchase the new book .
Once they had a book to look at, it was hard to pry their eyes away - even for the slideshow!
The many contributors of stories, photos, videos, research and editing were acknowledged as well as the Elk's many years of working to promote the park. The book can also be purchased at the museum.
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Friday, July 18, 2008

What's New at Tomahawk Park?

  • We have new speedbumps on our road through the park. Now the vehicles have to slow down. It had been a concern for pedestrians before.
  • Our new walking path leads from the pond, past the museum buildings and to the Tomahawk. There will be park benches along the way and signage as well. This all took place because of the cooperation between the local Seniors and CMMM to attain a New Horizons Grant. G&C Asphalt Services Ltd. of North Battleford very promptly finished the paving after Stapley Trucking helped prepare the ground. G&C Asphalt Services were very generous in their support of this endeavor. Thank you so much! The paving had hardly time to cool off before people were using it!
  • The tree and shrub planter has been finished with new shrubs and a topping of bark mulch.
  • Trees have been trimmed. The large poplar behind Ovenstown and lower branches of others.
  • Power and water are trenched into the Duvall House and Ovenstown (water).
  • Power has been trenched to Pond area for new light post to light up the pond area (Wildlife Federation).
  • Upgrades to security system installed.
  • Maintenance volunteers have installed gates behind the buildings to limit vehicle traffic.
  • Volunteer mowers are keeping the grass in the park looking great! Employees do the trim work.
  • Volunteers are building shelving in the Armstrong building for storage/display.
Great work everyone!

Student Grants This Summer

We are so grateful for the student grants that we received from Young Canada Works in Heritage Organizations and the Student Employment Experience Program. This is how we are able to provide employment for young people. These jobs are often their first job experience. We would never be able to accomplish as much at our museum and park without these energetic young adults.
Filling out grant applications is not a favorite job, but the museum benefits from a successful application. And the MGP Grant looms in the near future.... our very favorite one....not!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Canada!

Great day today in the Park! Check out the slideshow!

The tent proved to be a good thing for our event. The cool breeze blew through all day keeping everyone very comfortable.

From the pancake breakfast by the Parks board in the morning, BBQ lunch at noon by the Firefighters/Ambulance group, the Museum supper, to the fireworks at dark, it was a lovely day.

Youngsters of the community decorated their bikes and paraded through town behind Glen Brebner's horse drawn wagon. The wagon then gave rides for the rest of the afternoon. Thanks Glen and helpers!
An outdoor carnival of fun games and treats was a hit - especially the dunk tank!
There was a bingo for the older folks in the bright red and white tent.
There was a Show 'n Shine that displayed some vehicles proudly shown off by their owners and appreciated by those who looked them over.
The museum was open in the afternoon for all to wander though at their leisure.
Roger Emberley provided music under the tent in the afternoon and the Emberley Family (also including Linda and daughter, Karen Rutley) in the evening before the fireworks.
Two huge cakes were served - one for Canada Day and one to celebrate Oventown's 100 birthday.
And after supper the Miller Family entertained the crowd.

Thanks to everyone who made the day a success. Especially the many volunteers helping our community to celebrate our country's birthday.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Summer Students' First Day

It was a hot day today (30+ degrees Celsius) for the Summer Students' first day. Orientation and preparation for Canada Day tomorrow kept everyone busy and sweating!
The grounds look great - hope there are lots of people who take in the events tomorrow.
Pancake Breakfast, Bike Decorating Parade, Arcade, Dunk Tank, BBQLunch, Live entertainment, Beef on a Bun Supper, Miller Family Troupe, Dance on the Green, and Fireworks at dark!
What a great way to celebrate Canada's Birthday!

Duvall House Update

The interior of the Duvall House has been worked on in the past few weeks. The Master bedroom (the Legion), the Balcony bedroom (Gisele and Joan) and the southwest bedroom(the Weikle family) have been scraped, primed and painted. The CWL/Knights of Columbus have taken on the Living Room. Now the ex-bathroom, upstairs hall, entry, dining room and kitchen are all that remain to have sponsors to restore.

We are waiting on the rest of the windows to be metal clad and the siding put on. The water and power will be trenched to the house soon and a security system installed.
The Children's bedroom is now a bright sunny yellow and the Master bedroom is a heritage green color. Gisele and Joan are still trying to scrape the pink paint off of the Balcony room walls. Good luck ladies!!

Some artifacts have been chosen for the rooms when they are finished. Also the original kitchen cupboards have been located and may be re-installed.

(This update is for general knowledge, but is especially for Coreen in New Zealand!)

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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Walking Path for the Park

On Thursday before the wind and rains began, the pavers
began putting in the walking path through the park. We'll give details in a later blog.
Already we've seen both children and adults taking a stroll on the partially finished path.

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Motorcylists Scavenger Hunt Stop

Fifty-two motorcyclists stopped at our museum this morning as a part of their group's annual tour around western Canada. They each had a sheet of questions about our museum that they needed answered in order to complete this stop's part of their pre-planned scavenger hunt.
They were a fine group of adventureous people who are enjoying open prairie roads on their bikes.
They came from all different places - Alberta, Sask and even one lady from

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