Tourism award an unexpected honour

Stephanie Rose (left) and Joel Provencher (right) perform at the Country at the Creek Music Festival in June 2013. -- Submitted photo.

Country at the Creek organizers didn’t intend to win awards when they founded the music festival six years ago, so last week’s honour came as a bit of a surprise.

On April 5, the annual festival, which takes place at the Ness Creek site near Big River, was named the 2016 Community Event of the Year at the Saskatchewan Tourism Gala in Saskatoon.

For event coordinator Jeanette Wicinksi-Dunn, it was a long way from where they started.

“I wasn’t even sure the festival would go six years when it started,” she remembered during an interview on Monday. “It was just six people sitting around a table one night talking about everything else that happens out at the Ness Creek site, and the other festivals that were going on at the time. Somebody just suggested that maybe a country music festival should get started.”

Wicinski-Dunn said they were in a start of disbelief when they’re name was called. Although Country at the Creek has received several nominations in the past, this was the first year they made the cut for the final three. She said they were just happy to be there, and never expected to come home with the award.

“We were up against some tough competition,” Wicinski-Dunn said. “It was just very exciting.”