“We are one of the larger organizations in town, so when we have events, we like to include other groups. That helps them out,” says Doug Drolet, President.
But that is not the only way the Ag Society is having an impact. A variety of events, some old and some new, bring the community together to celebrate and preserve St. Paul’s agricultural heritage.
“We built the cage this year,” explains Drolet. “I saw it at the Bull-A-Rama in Czar Lake and wanted to bring that experience here.”
The experience is a seat in the center of the action. In the same way a diver, by staying safety inside a cage, can experience sharks in their natural habitat, those with seats will be protected from the bulls while having the best – and most heart pumping – seat in town. Want a seat? They are being auctioned off, so drop your bid now!
What else is happening during Rodeo Week? Lots of food, for one. There are pancake breakfasts, a $3 hot dog lunch, a $3 pulled pork supper, a Ukrainian Lunch, and much more.
The many food options are a longstanding tradition, but 2022 hopes to launch a new tradition for the kids: mutton scrambling.
“The DQ Mutton Scramble,” informs Drolet, “replaces the wild pony races and gives our local kids a chance to compete. Basically, simply register and ride a sheep. The sheep come out like the bucking broncos, through the same gates. However, the sheep are gentle and low to the ground. The riders have a safety jacket and helmet. The top three runners win prizes.”
Another event to look forward to is team doctoring, which is part of Ranch Rodeo on the Sunday after Bull-A-Rama. Team doctoring is where teams capture and stamp calves. This is a great way to see what these professionals do for a living and how it ties into the ownership and responsibly of livestock.
“Doctoring is exciting to watch,” smiles Drolet. “It’s as western as it gets!”
One thing everyone looks forward to is the annual parade. Aptly named for this year “Back in The Saddle Again,” the parade takes place on September 3. Viewers and participants can learn more here: https://stpaulagsociety.com/parade.
Outside of the events there are plenty of ways to engage with the Ag society. The ACCA Co-op Youth Leadership Program helps youth discover friendships, skills and talents. The scholarship program helps five local youths per year attend agricultural post secondary studies.
These are just a few of the many ways the Society benefits the community. Learn more by exploring www.stpaulagsociety.com.
“The society thanks our partners, sponsors, friends and most of all, our volunteers – which we consider the best in Alberta!” says Drolet.
He concludes, “Ag societies and their events are important so the everyone can experience how our towns and even cities came to be, and where our food comes from. Eggs come from Safeway, but Safeway doesn’t make eggs. The ag experience is vital – it is a way of life.”