Before I write one word in this column, I want to wish our successful NICU graduate a happy 17th birthday. He gave us quite a scare 17 years ago today but he has been a nonstop action movie ever since, always sharing his big giant smile with everyone. Happy birthday, Landon.
Minor Hockey week recognition is upon us and we would be amiss not to give a shout out to our 10 UMH teams along with our Midget AA squad. As well, we have UMH alumni playing in other communities that include Hunter Sperle, Karson Blanchette and Colbey Frocklage playing with West Central Bantam AA Wheat Kings, Carter Ralston playing with Pee Wee West Central AA Wheat Kings, Colby Ralston playing with North Battleford Midget AAA North Stars. Forgive me if there are more but these were the gents I knew about. Hockey happenings are plentiful as all teams have begun league and provincial playoffs, meaning there are just a few home games left before UMH teams, Midget AA Lazers and the Unity Miners begin their quests for another championship banner to be hung in our rafters. Check the schedules on the town of unity website, the TVs in the arena lobby or watch for posters around town.
One of our finest venues operated entirely on volunteers and donations could use your support for their biggest fundraiser – the weekly Sunday brunches held at the Adanac Hall on the museum grounds each week from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Come and enjoy some food and fellowship either before or after church Sunday morning and leaving the cooking to this fine crew.
If you are looking for places to socialize, meet up with friends and neighbors or just take part in some of the action in the community, your opportunities are plentiful. You can join one of the coffee groups at anyone of our local coffee shops, most popular in the mornings and early afternoons. You can come cheer on one of the participants in weekend sports tournaments at your local high school; and don’t miss your opportunity to browse the alumni and students wall of honors while you are there. You can come to the Unity curling rink Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday and watch league curling and you can join your favorite curler or team in the lounge either pre game or post game for some socializing. It’s free to attend. You can come and watch any of the bonspiel action on the weekends upcoming almost steadily in the next six weeks also at the UCC. There is hockey almost every night of the week at the arena and there is always room for fans in the stands. Enjoy a cup of coffee or booth treat while visiting with other folks and watching the game – and don’t miss the opportunity to browse the Unity Sports Wall of Fame while you’re there. Any of our community churches offer great opportunities to meet and greet with fellow residents each Sunday; as well as many host occasional coffee and/or lunch events following services. The New Horizons hall offers social opportunities in their weekly schedule. On any given nice day just simply taking a walk around town will certainly put you into an encounter with other folks enjoying the same seasonal opportunity.
We are now one month past our shortest day and you can already notice that our days are edging out a little longer sunshine hours each day.
At UPS, There are many things coming up which I want to share with you. On Feb. 8, their annual Grades 4-6 ski trip will take place at Table Mountain. Teachers and staff are continuing to work toward their school goals. This year, UPS are also working towards a positive learning climate at UPS. We have had many activities to include the wonderful families we have here. As a school, they are using their newsletter and the student agendas as our main mode of communication; as well as a Facebook page but we use it more for reminders than a main source of information.
At St. Peter’s School they are preparing to wrap up lessons for the month of January and will soon be beginning some new chapters in both academics and faith studies. Skiing, curling and basketball are all part of the extra-curricular fun at St. Peter’s. With February including Family Day long weekend and a winter break, both staff and students are committed to staying on track with all that their school year entails. The New Year also means students are equally excited about Mr. Volk welcoming a new baby into his family come spring.
At UCHS staff and students continue to stay academically focused with exam week now in place and Semester two starting next week. Basketball keeps both gyms busy. Robotics teams are prepping for upcoming competitions. SADD, SLC and yearbook continue working towards their goals. Grade 12 students are all too aware that they are soon entering their last semester of high school and continue to forge on with classes, grad plans, post-secondary plans and getting all those scholarship applications completed. A big congratulations to two UCHS students who earned a spot on Team Saskatchewan Alpine Team representing our province in Canada Winter Games upcoming in Red Deer this February. UCHS Grade 12 student, Presli O’Donnell, is also a participant in these games after earning a spot on the dance team performing at opening ceremonies.
Unity Curling Club is in the midst of one of their bigger bonspiels this week, the JayDee Ag Tech Men’s Spiel Jan 21-26. As well they have upcoming senior men’s northern curling playdowns the following weekend, the first weekend of Feb. Feb 1 to 3; and hopes are for this event to include a local team or two. The Sask. State Knights of Columbus bonspiel will begin Feb. 8 and run to Feb. 10 including K of C participants from across the province. Following that February event, UCHS is playing host to senior high Battlewest District curling playdowns Feb. 12 and 13, from which top teams will advance to regional playdowns in hopes of earning a provincial berth. The annual Oilman’s bonspiel takes place Feb. 28 to March 3 while the annual Bramiche farms ladies spiel will be hosted St. Patrick’s Day weekend starting on March 15.
The club chooses to play host to all of these events for a variety of reasons. Hosting is an opportunity to showcase their fine facility and it’s a source of pride to have visitors and non regulars at the UCC appreciate the efforts that go into their modern and spacious lounge; as well as appreciate the dedicated commitment of the icemakers to ensure the best curling ice possible for all curlers. While a busy second half of the season with all of these events on tap does make for some extra work for executive, lounge workers and ice makers; it goes without saying that there are financial benefits to playing host as well. Additionally, economic benefits of any venue in Unity playing host trickles into the community as restaurants, accommodations and fuel are often sought by those attending from out of town.
If you enjoy participating in curling then one of these upcoming bonspiel events could be for you. If you are a curling fan and enjoy watching games live, then there is plenty of opportunity at your local club to do just that. Come enjoy some “takeout,” “house cleaning,” “drawing” and a whole lot of rock and roll happening at the Unity curling club for the second half of this curling season.
Don’t forget Jan. 29 is the deadline for nominations for the “Celebrate Unity” event upcoming March 4. If a business has gone above and beyond, or someone has contributed significant time and dedication to community activities, groups, events or organizations, let Helena know at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact her at the Press Herald office.
February in town will be including both hockey rink and curling rink non-stop action as well as the Kin Club “Treat your Sweet” Telemiracle fundraising event on Feb. 8th.
Coffee row has braved some of this colder weather for their daily gatherings as they know it’s a fun, jovial daily gathering at various venues. They love reviewing local events, and activities that have taken place or are upcoming. As well, the weather is a common source of conversation. So you can see life is full of fun and activity in Unity and our friends at coffee row sharing this traditional part of our community culture. Until next time…