We are better than this.
Click pic to watch ad.
The picture above shows the second largest city in Manitoba in 1916. Over 30,000 men trained for WWI at Camp Hughes just west of Carberry. A town sprung up around the training base that included movie theatres, hotels, even a swimming pool. Almost 100 years after its heyday, Camp Hughes consists of some indentations where the trenches were and a cemetery housing those who died during training and local people from the area after 1920.
Camp Hughes is one of my favourite stopping spots for its solitude and subtle beauty. On Monday I happened to be power napping when two vehicles arrived carrying two Carberry men – former town mayor Wayne Blair and Brad Wells, both members of Friends of Camp Hughes. They came bearing the architect’s plan for an information kiosk on site that would expand upon the small provincial plaque that currently explains the area’s past. One of the directors of the Shilo Artillery Museum arrived and shared numerous ideas for design and information location. The aim is have the kiosk done for the site’s centenary in 2016.
The Friends of Camp Hughes hold a heritage day every fall and invite the public to visit and learn more about the base and its activities. This year the event is on Sunday October 4 starting about 11:00 til mid afternoon. There is no charge for the event. Camp Hughes is located off PR 351 about 14 km west of Carberry. Watch for signs that will direct you in via a good gravel road.
Just back from a four day jaunt into western Manitoba that began with a productive heritage meeting in Carberry where the potato harvest is underway. Hundreds of people are involved this year, potato trucks abound on the highways and caterers are kept busying feeding the crews. Over 20,000 acres of potatoes are grown in the the area, much of the crop processed at the McCain Canada plant south of town. Odds are good that an order of french fries at a McDonald’s from here through the Mid West into Texas was grown and processed near Carberry. I followed a potato truck whose model was a Spudnik.
North on Highway #5 got me to Dauphin and the Vondarosa, my cousin’s piece of paradise on the edge of Riding Mountain. The picture at the top is of Riding Mountain and the big Manitoba sky taken from her grid road. It’s a different crop around Dauphin. Thousands of acres sport lush green hemp fields that will be harvested in October for both the fibre and the seed. The fibre will be processed at Plains Hemp in near-by Gilbert Plains. The company is North America’s leading provider of industrial hemp fibre and hurd products which are used for everything from horse bedding to hempcrete (building material). Much of the hemp seed will be processed by Parkland Industrial Hemp Growers in Dauphin.
Although apparently it’s been grown in the area since 1992, I saw my first crop of quinoa growing across the road from a hemp field on this trip. The above picture is of the massive field of the stubby stalks loaded with seeds. NorQuin operates out of Saskatoon, SK and supplies stores with quinoa in numerous forms. Products made from hemp seeds and quinoa seeds are available at Sobey’s, Co-Op and elsewhere. The picture on the left is a close-up of quinoa plants.
The Dauphin Humane Society held a sold-out fundraiser on Saturday night featuring three comedians and a band. All the comedians were edgy and richly entertained the largely 30s and 40s-aged crowd. Dan Glasswick from Winnipeg and Sterling Scott from Edmonton were the headliners but I was most entertained by young Winnipegger Mike Green (right) whose spontaneous style humourously involved the audience, playing off members of the crowd. Scott will represent Canada at the World Series of Comedy in Las Vegas this week. The band called Revolving Door – possibly a joke – was raw, rockin’ and ragged.
As combines do the final harvesting both south and north of RMNP, the fall palette of colours is starting to emerge, especially beautiful through the Park. This is a picture of me at a ford crossing of the Vermilion River with the lush colours all around.
The federal election has spawned a temporary blight of politician’s signs on the landscape. In a field along the highway outside Dauphin these hopeful words: