The official unveiling of the Blaine Lake centennial legacy monument entitled, A celebration - the art of stoking, was held Saturday, Aug. 4, following the community’s centennial parade.
Pat Ciona, monument committee chair, was emcee for the brief program at the monument site. The highly visual sculpture is an artistic representation of a stook of eight wheat sheaves and was designed and constructed by Patricia Shiplett who is a prolific multimedia artist from Saskatoon specializing in sculpture.
Her works are held in public and private corporations throughout Canada, United States and Japan. Her love for the three dimensional architecturally pleasing structures enhances her ability to create substantial works of art that can be seen throughout Saskatoon, and now one of her art pieces adorns the community of Blaine Lake.
Shiplett was able to create an artificial composite of golden wheat that bears a striking resemblance to its natural counterpart.
“This sculpture of the stook honours our great-grandparents, grandparents and parents whose livelihoods were in some way intertwined with the harvesting of grains,” explained Ciona. “All those who settled in the prairie provinces harvested the kernels. Our sculpture will remind all who view it of the gratitude we owe to our ancestors for choosing to come to Saskatchewan, the greatest province in the greatest country in the world.”
The BL centennial monument committee was the successful recipient of a federal grant entitled Building Communities through Arts and Heritage Program-Legacy Fund in the amount of $43,750 to assist with the building of the project.
Ciona acknowledged the special guests in attendance and made special note of the monument committee also consisting of Maureen Barrie, Marj Pool and Jenna Nemish.
Blaine Lake Mayor Ernie Crowder presented greetings on behalf of the residents and town council members. Crowder acknowledged the many volunteers for the amount of dedicated hours and work they put into making the sculpture reality.
Scott Moe, MLA for Rosthern/Shellbrook constituency, commended the centennial committee for their efforts and dedication over the past few years as they planned and organized for the centennial. He presented a plaque to Mayor Ernie Crowder on behalf of the government of Saskatchewan honouring the community’s centennial.
David Marit, president of the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM), recognized and acknowledged the community spirit alive that day.
“It is so nice to see how proud people are of their community involvement through their sense of pride,” commented Marit who proceeded to present Blaine Lake Rural Municipality Deputy Reeve John Priestley with a plaque honouring the RM’s centennial.
Also in attendance from SARM was Ron Stevens, director of Division 5. BL RM is part of his division.
Hometown boy, Honourable Ken Cheveldayoff, MLA for Silver Springs in Saskatoon, was given the honour of officially unveiling the legacy monument with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
“I had the opportunity to grow up here in Blaine Lake,” commented Cheveldayoff. “When you talk about community, you talk about family. The people in the community took the time to make us learn about our past yet taught us how to be excited about the future. It is a part of what makes Saskatchewan grow. Whenever I return to my hometown it is always very special, so thank you Blaine Lake for making Saskatchewan a province to be proud of.”