I’ve used this space before to talk about the great people that I’ve met in this city.
I never take for granted the access and opportunities afforded me by virtue of my job.
But as I was doing my daily 7 a.m. dog walk the other day, I started thinking about the places I’ve been in Prince Albert in my 41 weeks living here.
One of the first places I stepped foot in was the Alfred E. Jenkins Field House. It was a good start because I was blown away by the facilities.
I was also taken through the Art Hauser Centre. It was beautifully redone in the front but I still think the arena itself badly needs some major work.
I was lucky to even get a tour through the Raiders dressing room in the off-season.
In the last month I’ve covered hockey games at Kinsmen Arena and Dave G. Steuart Arena; they are both spots that I would know well had I grown up in the city.
I was quick to visit City Hall when I arrived, enjoying coffee with former mayor Jim Scarrow in his office. I’ve also shared a coffee with Sask Rivers School Division Supt. John Schmidt in his office in the SRSD headquarters.
(You may pick up a theme here; I drink a lot of coffee with a lot of different people.)
Linda Jensen and Darren McCaffery showed Herald publisher John Morash and I through the E.A Rawlinson Centre, which is another magnificent spot. I had already been to the adjacent Mann Gallery and met curator Griffith Aaron Baker.
In a two-week span recently I visited Carlton, Prince Albert Collegiate Institute and St. Mary, giving me a good sense of high school life in the city.
I’ve also spent time in Westview, Ecole Valois and Arthur Pechey.
I’ve offered to visit classrooms to discuss journalism and newspapers so I hope to see more schools in the community.
I’ve walked around SIAST but haven’t gone inside yet.
I’ve swam in the Frank Dunn Pool and visited Prime Ministers’ Park many times.
My old hound and I have walked around Little Red River Park many times.
In fact, every weekend we park in a random spot and walk in a different part of the city.
It’s a great way to get to know a place. Strangely, my 13-year-old dog quickly takes charge; he may have never visited your neighbourhood before but he’s pretty sure he knows where he needs to go when he gets there.
While it’s been a few years since I’ve golfed, my hound and I have also walked this winter on what’s obviously a beautiful Cooke Municipal Golf Course. They also have tremendous lounge and restaurant spaces.
The Rotary Trail is an outstanding feature for the city. The visionaries who came up with the idea deserve a lot of praise.
I’ve ridden my bike on the shoulders of highways around the city so I’ve even had a chance to see the area around Prince Albert and to make short visits to Duck Lake and Rosthern before pedalling home.
I have a long list of retail outlets and restaurants that have put some Bergson money through the cash register. I’ve been thrilled with the variety and quality of both in Prince Albert.
I’ve been in the Northern Lights Casino and hope to take them up soon on their offer of a tour.
I’ve been inside both Parkland Ambulance buildings and also visited the Prince Albert Police Service building.
The Arts Building is a neat old structure, while the John M. Cuelenaere Library has some terrific spaces in it.
Connie Farber gave me a tour of the Indian Metis Friendship Centre. Their room for elders and recreation facilities for youth are both great ideas.
The air show gave me a chance to get out to the airport.
The Exhibition Grounds is a spot I’ve walked a few times and the Exhibition Centre is another wonderful facility.
I have a couple of shameful omissions to make. I have yet to visit Diefenbaker House or the Prince Albert Historical Museum, an appalling oversight by a history buff.
You can’t see everything but I feel like I’ve had a pretty good start. Thanks to all of the people above who made me feel welcome.
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It’s Daily Herald night at the Raiders game on Tuesday and we’re hoping that you’ll join us. While fans who see a lot of games may have noticed me at work with my camera on a tripod, the rink will be full of Daily Herald staff that night.
In our “Bums In Seats” promotion, you can win pizza and even a stay at the Ramada Inn and supper at Sopranos.
But to win, you have to be sitting on a picture of somebody’s bottom that will be running in the paper for the next few days.
We’ll also be doing videos of anyone who wants to have their say and special offers on subscriptions.
And of course there’s a hockey game. The Chiefs have an almost identical record to the Raiders in the tough American division so it adds a compelling storyline on the ice.