Doctor recruitment, repaving 2023 highlights for Porcupine Plain

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Nicole Goldsworthy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter,

PORCUPINE PLAIN — Recruitment of a new doctor, massive paving of streets and renovations to the swimming pool were the highlights of 2023 for the Town of Porcupine Plain.

Koral Kriger, the town’s community development officer, said the doctor recruitment committee approved a third physician, and the new doctor has now arrived as well as a new RCMP officer and their family.

The Town of Porcupine Plain took on a big paving project this summer which included the street to the hospital, as well as streets that weren’t previously paved.

Kriger mentioned the memorial bench program brought six new benches into Porcupine Plain parks and public spaces – one has been installed in front of the cenotaph at the Community Hall, three will be permanently installed at the picnic shelter by the Larwood-Shaw Memorial Pool, and two will be installed at Scott Park after walking paths have been installed in 2024.

The Porcupine Plain Comprehensive School Grade 10 welding class has been busy supporting projects in the community, including constructing and installing boards at the outdoor rink in February 2023, building a frame for the Air Cadets holiday message board, and giving the Town’s Christmas decorations a facelift.

”We are incredibly grateful for Mr. [Brockston] Riley and PPCS for offering such a hands-on program for students, and for the opportunity to work with the community on these projects,” Kriger said.

Métis Nation – Saskatchewan Eastern Region II hosted their first Unity in the Community event. the Town has been working closely with MNS ERII to co-host the 2024 event, scheduled for Feb. 10.

“The Town of Porcupine Plain feels incredibly fortunate to be able to partner with MNS ERII to celebrate Métis heritage and to bring Métis culture into the spotlight in our community,” Kriger said.

The Town of Porcupine Plain has been successful with many grant applications.

“With grant funding, we were able to host several Culture Days events and activities in the fall, including a very well attended Métis embroidery and crafting workshop on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.”

The Larwood-Shaw Memorial swimming pool was a major undertaking. Construction completed on the pool this fall, with a few minor things left to do but Kriger said it should be up and running for next summer. The LSMP committee continues its fundraising efforts to help cover operating costs.

Kriger said 2024 Quilly Willy Sports Days will feature a Métis square dancers and fiddler thanks to a grant, there are big plans for the car show this summer, and they are already planning some great stuff for Culture Days 2024.

The Town of Porcupine Plain plans on developing and doing a bit of landscaping and some work in the mechanical room at the LSM Pool & Park project.

Scott Park will see installation of walking path and park furnishings in 2024 and get permanent signage for the Story Stroll installed. The Museum has received a grant to install sidewalk in the backyard to increase accessibility to the outbuildings, this is scheduled for 2024.

“Whatever Christmas is to you, make time to enjoy it,” Mayor Nick Wood said. “Appreciate the food, the pageantry and the friendship. Look to your neighbours and take care of each other. If you can do that you will be guaranteed a wonderful Christmas this year. If you aren’t able to, don’t ever be afraid to ask for help. It’s not the major inconvenience that you think it will be. This community steps up all the time without a second thought.

“On behalf of myself, council and staff of the Town of Porcupine Plain, Merry Christmas to you and yours, and all the very best to you in the New Year.”