Official unveiling of donated Epp sculpture

The Town of Radisson hosted a special fall celebration on Oct. 18 to commemorate a bountiful harvest, a successful centennial celebration in August and to honour the Epp family with the unveiling of a bronzed sculptured bear.

The evening began with cocktails, then everyone went across the street from the hall for the unveiling. Mayor Dave Summers welcomed everyone and thanked Betty Epp and her family for the beautiful work of art sculpted by the late Bill Epp and donated to the Town of Radisson to commemorate the Radisson centennial 2013. Appraised at $40,000, this beautiful sculpture is the largest and most expensive gift donated to Radisson and will be displayed with gratitude, honour and awe, Summers said.

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The plaque beside the bear states " Black Bear - Bill Epp (1930-1995) -This sculpture was created by the renowned artist Bill Epp and graciously donated to the Town of Radisson by his wife Betty. Mr. Epp was born in Glenbush, Sask. and throughout his illustrious career, he was commissioned to create many monuments across Canada and abroad. The Town is very grateful for this generous donation."

Walter Kyliuk told a bit of the history of another bear monument that is just down the street, then everyone went back in to the hall for a dinner served by the Radisson Communiplex Committee.

After the meal, Walter introduced the head table - Betty Epp, her daughter Jean Epp-Gauthier, son Del Epp, grandson Sebastien Gauthier, Mayor Dave Summers and his wife Laurie and MLA Randy Weekes.

Betty Epp gave a bit of the history of the bear, why it was sculpted and said it will look much better in front of Radisson town office than her front yard. One condition she made when she donated the bear and agreed to attend the supper was that Walter had to play the fiddle during the program.

Randy Weeks spoke of the rich history of the bear and the generous donation to Radisson and thanked the committee for a wonderful dinner.

Walter then showed a five-minute video on the Radisson centennial celebration created by SaskTel Max, then Gerald Wiebe sang the Centennial Song he had composed for the event.

After a few minutes of "tuning up" and setting up, the Ukrainian Connection played, with Walter playing two tunes on his fiddle, then Will Ballantyne from Wilkie took over on vocals. They soon cleared out the middle row of tables and the dance floor was full for those who enjoy dancing to the old time music. 50/50 tickets were sold and Bill Kochan of Radisson won $220.

More than 220 attended the Maymont United Church Fowl supper on Oct. 20. Next ones to enjoy are Speers Oct. 23 and Langham, Oct. 27.

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