The 26th annual Battlefords Business Excellence Awards felt more like the Oscars for one business this year.
It was Capitol Theatre who went home with the top prize of Business of the Year at the 2019 BBEX awards gala, put on by Battlefords Chamber of Commerce.
The Capitol won out over finalists selected from the six open categories up for awards at Gold Eagle Casino Events Centre.
“Are you sure?” was the reaction of Manager Ursula Swindler as she went up to the podium to accept the Business of the Year BBEX from Battlefords MLA Herb Cox.
“We’re very excited, very happy to be recognized in the community,” said Swindler.
The business, owned by Magic Lantern Theatres, recently expanded to include both the original Capitol at the corner of 11th Avenue and 100th Street, as well as the four-screen Capitol Annex across the street which opened earlier this year.
The business includes a staff of 20, many of them students.
When asked why she thought the Capitol won, Swindler pointed to the local enthusiasm for the theatre.
“The only thing I can think of is you know, people love coming to the movies and it’s something to do. The customers coming through are so happy, my staff loves working there, so we try and make a really good positive environment for everybody to come in.”
They weren’t the only winners of the night. Here is a look at the BBEX recipients in the other categories:
The BBEX for Community Contribution went to Battlefords Agency Tribal Chiefs. Executive Director Neil Sasakamoose accepted on behalf of BATC. Other nominees were: Battlefords North Stars Hockey Club, Capitol Theatre, Fisher’s Drug Store, North West College, Sky-Tech Equipment, Splish Splash Auto RV and Pet Wash and Western Financial Group.
The Micro Business award went to Twin City Transmission. Century Signs LTD., and STIL Boutique & Beauty Inc. were the other nominees.
The Marketing award went to Bridges Chevrolet Buick GMC. Other nominees were Beaver Grill Express Asian Restaurant, KAL Tire, Northern Nurseries and Triod Supply.
The award for New Business Venture went to Jeans N Joggers Kidz. Other nominees were Battlefords Pizza & Donairs, and Dejma’s Curry House.
The award for Customer Service went to Zeke’s Quality Jewellers LTD. Other nominees were Artrageous Custom Art Finishing and Gallery, Comfort Inn and Suites and Twin City Transmission.
Battlefords Best Employer: the award went to the lone nominee, Bralin Technology Solutions. CEO Brad Kowerchuk accepted on behalf of the company.
The Heritage Award went to the Battlefords Ag Society. This award is the one award normally announced prior to the awards ceremony in a separate process and is not up for the Business of the Year.
There was a special surprise announced at the awards gala. In recognition of her 30 years with the Battlefords Chamber, the Chamber’s long time operations manager Heather Guthrie was having an award named after her. Beginning next year, BBEX will introduce the Heather Guthrie Customer Service Star Award to honour customer service in the community.