The town of LeRoy has been preparing for and awaiting their centennial celebration, and the community need wait no longer. This weekend LeRoy residents and expats will gather to mark the town’s 100th anniversary this weekend.
The planning for the Centennial Celebration has been busy with all the moving pieces, says Rick Paetsch, chair of the committee.
“We’ve got the LeRoy 100th anniversary, we’ve got the LeRoy Curling Club’s 100th anniversary, we have the LeRoy Leisureland’s 50th, and our community matriarch, Bea McGrath, it’s her 100th birthday, and we’re celebrating all of those on that same weekend.”
LeRoy had its humble beginnings with a school that went by the name of Bog End, named after the sloughs and swampy terrain. When the CPR constructed a rail line connecting Watson and Lanigan, a key siding, and the community that emerged around it, was dubbed LeRoy.
In the same year as LeRoy was established, a curling rink was constructed to provide a passtime for the long prairie winters. While a succession of curling rinks were lost, the current rink exists on the original site connected to the ice plant for LeRoy’s community arena.
“Back in the day, the rink didn’t have artificial ice. It was go out and play in the cold,” laughs Paetsch.
The excitement starts on Friday night with well-known Saskatchewan country artist Cody Prevost taking the stage with opening act the O’Kraut Band. On Saturday night, the music continues with the Electric Cattle Company and Down 2 Souls from Saskatoon. Other local attractions include Spencer McKnight, classical tenor who has performed with both Regina and Saskatoon Symphony orchestras, and Kevin Harcourt adding his home ground brand of music to the mix. Lots of local talent will also be on hand throughout the day.
A Saturday morning parade will wake up the town’s weekend, followed by plenty of slo-pitch action, fast paced basketball, and helicopter rides. For those who enjoy a slower pace, a history walk through the town retraces its development. Sunday’s events include a show and shine and a fun run from LeRoy out to Leisureland for a breakfast and their 50th anniversary.
“In the senior’s centre, we’re having an art show and kind of a place for people to go and have a quiet spot to sit, relax, and have a coffee because sometimes it gets pretty hectic when you’re out and about all weekend,” says Paetsch.
Paetsch says plans are in place to have Bea McGrath return to her home community to take part in the celebration. Bea currently makes her home in Saskatoon, but she is expected to be onsite with a host of her family to share stories about the earliest days of living near LeRoy.
“She’s a great speaker, so it would be kind of fun to hear from her,” confides Paetsch.
Information on all the weekend’s events can be found at https://www.leroycentennial.com.