News | DrumhellerMail - Page #10
Last updateTue, 06 Jun 2023 4pm

Chainsaw Wizards carve their way into valley's heart

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The buzz of saws and the smell of sawdust nearly drowned out the smoke in the valley as the Chainsaw Wizards cut their way into the valley, leaving behind lasting works of art.
Last weekend chainsaw artisans carved their way into the valley’s heart.
Using felled timber from the flood mitigation projects, Carver Kings Paul and Jacob Frenette, Ryan Villiers, Marina Cole and Michael Penny created works of art which will adorn the valley for years to come. Along with the works they created in the downtown core, they also carved some of the stumps in Participark into works of art.
Now, residents and visitors enjoying the path can interact with art along the way.

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The goal of organizers, Harv Saltys, Tony Miglecz and Wayne Powell, was to honour the trees which were cut during the flood mitigation project, and create a legacy. Last year they invited carver Marina Cole to the valley.

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The end project exceeded expectations, and this year they expanded. The downtown plaza was a hive of activity all weekend as locals and visitors watched the artists at work.
“It has been well received, not only by locals but visitors. I had people from Sherwood Park, I’ve had people from Brooks, all over. There are actually some amateur carvers who came down to see how to do it and virtually sat and watched the whole weekend,” said Miglecz. “It has been a great learning for us too. We had the idea, but you never know until you're doing it, and we came up with some ways that we can make it better.”

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“It is like tuning,” adds Saltys. “You run it through, add some tweaks and adjustments and it gets better.”
Watching the artists at work, they employed much more than chainsaws. The works were sculpted with grinders, sanders and chiles. They are coloured with paints, stains, airbrushing and torches.
Another part of the weekend is they had a couple of quick cut carve challenges, where the artists would take as half hour to make a carving, and then put it up on the auction block. This means even more works will stick around the valley for years to come.
As far as future events, Saltys notes there is no shortage of inventory.

Travel Drumheller welcomes one new, returning board members during AGM

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Travel Drumheller held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, April 5 and welcomed one new member to the board, and one returning board member.
The evening started off with greetings from Drumheller Mayor Heather Colberg and Battle River-Crowfoot Member of Parliament Damien Kurek, as well as presentations from Travel Alberta Chief Executive Officer (CEO) David Goldstein.
During the AGM, Travel Drumheller highlighted things it has been working on in 2022, such as the Destination Development Plan, and plans ahead for 2023.
Expenses and revenues in 2022 were both up compared to the previous year; there was a total of $675,976 in revenues in 2022, not including income from interest of $1,189. This was up from $360,771 in 2021, not including interest income of $534. However, expenses were also up, from $318,858 in 2021 to $678,124, and there was a deficiency of $959 for the year; Travel Drumheller had had a total of over $41,000 in excess revenues over expenditures in 2021.

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Two positions were filled on the board, with Ramada Hotel manager Theresa Vyvey welcomed back to the board as a returning member and Chris Lorenz, owner and operator of Heller Good Sandwiches, welcomed as a new member to the board.

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Travel Drumheller Executive director Julia Fielding says Travel Drumheller currently has about 60 partners within the community, primarily in tourism related businesses. She explains partners are given the opportunity to participate in several Travel Drumheller programs, such as the Tourism and Hospitality Job Fair, and Drum Discovery which helps to build knowledge about the Drumheller region and was developed to make front-line staff valley ambassadors.
Partnerships have gradually increased year over year, and Ms. Fielding says partnership is up by about 15 from the previous year.

Trial date set for inmate accused of murder


A trial date has been set for an inmate charged with murder after an assault in January 2022.
Defence for Ashley Baird, Hugh Sommerville appeared in Alberta Court of Justice in Drumheller on Friday, May 12.
This was a procedural appearance to make sure process was transferred to the Court of King’s Bench, where Baird was arraigned the previous day.
The charges arise from an incident on January, 26, 2022, at approximately 8:40 p.m., where Drumheller RCMP responded to a serious assault at the Drumheller Institution.
The assault on 34-year-old Jeffrey Ryan of Parkland County, Alberta, by Ashley Baird, 38, of Nanaimo, B.C., was allegedly unprovoked.
Jeffrey Ryan sustained serious injuries and was transported to hospital where he died.
Baird was charged with second-degree murder. A trial date for Baird was set for May 27, 2024.


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