Wednesday, 22 February 2017
The old Esther Curling Rink was always a hub of activity during the winter months. There was square draw curling, open bonspiels, women's bonspiels, men's bonspiels and school curling. My Dad was one of the caretakers of the rink so I was the resident rink rat. I always remember the big boiler full of coffee, the homemade stew, soups and best of all was all that homemade pie. One winter during the ladies bonspiel, My Dad (Don Parks), Robert Brockman, Bill Dalton Jr. and Elvin Person dressed up as ladies and entered the women's bonspiel. They got lots of hoots and hollers and had a whole lot of fun. Growing up in a small community, gave us all great opportunities to participate in the community events and learn to volunteer to keep the community working smoothly. My mother was always involved in the community and as I got older I participated and now my daughters and granddaughter are volunteers in their respective communities.
Monday, 20 February 2017
The big old barn and a fine herd of horses are where the Big Bend Ranch got its start. Knut and Frida Westerlund moved from Sweden to Esther via Regina and several other stops along the way in 1925. In 1940 Len (Knut & Frida's son) and Marjorie purchased 3 cows and 3 heifers from Cecil Habberfield and the following spring their boys Douglas and Lloyd each bought a heifer from Fred Beynon Sr.. The cattle were all of Wincott breeding and this was how the Big Bend Hereford Ranch became to be. The barn still stands today and is home to some of the ancestors of those first cows and heifers. The ranch is operated by great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren of Knut and Frida.
Saturday, 18 February 2017
Last week one beautiful afternoon, we decided to take a quick drive east to see if we could find some unique photo ops. We made our way over to Kingman, Alberta and this old school caught my eye. It appeared to be part of the town landscape so I took a photo of it and posted it on the Abandoned Alberta site. A gentleman, who's mother had actually taught school in Kingman in 1947 gave me the actual history of this school. It was the original Dinant School, between Kingman and Camrose, the school was closed and moved to Camrose for storage and then in 1979, it was moved once again to Kingman. As we travel around the countryside there are so many old buildings that catch our eye and it is so nice to get the actual history on them. Thank you to Larry Flemming for his input on this one.