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A Covid Walk

Well what’s up for me today? Read? Have a late breakfast? Pick up small branches that our windy days deposit unceremoniously all over the lawn? Maybe, and I stress maybe, do one of those ‘Honey Do List’ items, which I, much more than my wife, create? Or just look around for a different kind of adventure? 

Time, at times, lately has been heavy on my hands.

 That is just what this Covid 19 period has provided – time to become restless – time that creates a need to seek out different ways to while away that excess time.

In the last two of my columns. I talked, with the aid of Nestor Hryciuk, about our Central Avenue of the past. In preparing those articles, I did visit our downtown. There was much to see and memories to recall.

I will digress into one of those memories that you may find amusing.

The last ‘Whale of a Tale’ mentioned that the Mills Brothers Store, which once existed on Central Avenue, sold newspapers that were not easily accessible, prior to internet days. One of those newspapers was the “Financial Post.” It came in once a week on Wednesdays. I was teaching grade eleven economics at the time. I set up an exercise for the students whereby they were given $100,000 each (pretend money, don’t forget I am a poor teacher) to invest in the stock market. They could only purchase or sell ‘their stocks’ out of that Wednesday edition of the “Financial Post” of which the school provided me three copies. The students then had to research the reasons for whatever outcome occurred for their investments, and record that research in their portfolios. One particular student always made money, no matter what. I was very impressed with his persistently favourable, and oh so wise, choices. 

Then one day, on my way to Mills Brothers, I dropped into Mike Medve’s Insurance firm on Central Ave. I heard a strange sounding machine operating in the back room. I asked Mike. “Is that a ‘Stock Ticker Machine’?”Mike smiled and said, “Well yes, it is. One of the few presently in Prince Albert.” I then asked if he had a young relative that ever came to see the Machine. “Why yes. My nephew, in grade eleven, drops by every Tuesday evening,”said Mike with a look of surprise.

 The next day I had a ‘little talk’ with that nephew. (Eh Dave?)  

Yes a walk down Central Avenue might bring back many memories. I suggest you start at the Historical Museum at 10 River Street E. Ring the door bell found on the east end of the building and a staff member will happily provide you with a self guided ‘Walking Tour Pamphlet’ that outlines 31 fascinating historic places within a few minutes of the museum. I did just that, and was made aware by the friendly staff at the museum of a new most intriguing addition to that walk, easily found east along the Rotary Trail immediately adjacent to the museum. 

There, one finds several panels, each some few yards apart. They depict “The Indigenous People of Prince Albert & Area Interpretive Walk.” I will quote from the first panel to whet your appetite.

“The Rotary Trail along the North Saskatchewan River is a perfect place for people to come together and reflect on Prince Albert, its people and history....The six ... panels briefly introduce you to the Indigenous people who have called the Prince Albert area home for thousands of years. These Indigenous groups are the Woodland Cree, Plains Cree, Swampy Cree, Dene, Dakota, and Metis.

These signs have been completed with the help of the First Nations and Metis Knowledge Keepers....

On each of the panels you will find a colourful mural ... and photographs and artifacts that have been identified as belonging to a particular Indigenous group. The information about each group is presented in English and in their traditional language.”

The exquisite layout of the artistically designed panels, with their intriguing photographs and artifact depictions, are something not to be missed. My wife’s reaction was, “These are exceptionally tasteful in their presentation.”

There is much awaiting you in downtown Prince Albert both along its streets and its beautiful river bank.

Take time for ‘home schooling’ of yourself and your relatives, your children, your grandchildren, your nephews, your nieces, your friends and neighbours.

It will be enjoyable, fascinating, and rewarding. It will grow your appreciation for the great place where we live:  

Historic Prince Albert and Area.

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Wednesday October 21, 2020

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