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preserve Loyalist history

Annual Conference: 2005

June 1 - 5, 2005
Ramada Inn
Regina, Saskatchewan

We, at the Regina Branch, are looking forward to welcoming you to Regina, the Queen City of the Prairies. "WESTWARD HO" became the catch phrase of thousands of settlers as they traveled west to begin their new lives in the early 1880’s. The early settlers, many of whom were Loyalist descendants, came from Ontario, the Maritimes and all over the world. Young men, wide eyed at the excitement of seeing their new homeland, new brides in awe of the expanse of prairie, either baking in the sun or white with snow, very likely to live in a “soddy.” The west was opening up quickly as settlers continued to arrive by the railway line and Saskatchewan entered Confederation in 1905. The Capital of the North West Territories was moved from Battleford to Regina when the Canadian Pacific Railway reached Regina in 1882 because Regina was more central.

Regina has a very strong connection to the British Monarchy. Originally called Pile of Bones, Regina was officially named by Princess Louise, daughter of Queen Victoria on August 23, 1882. Several of the streets also boast names connected to Royalty, two of the most famous being Albert Street and Victoria Avenue. The city is also the home of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, housing the only recruit-training academy in Canada. University of Regina Campus lays claim to the Saskatchewan Indian Federated College, the only University College in Canada run by and for First Nations People. Gail Bowen, award- winning crime novelist, calls Regina home and most of her stories are set in Regina. She has written many mystery stories around “Joanne Kilbourn” and a few were the basis of CTV movies.

Thursday evening we will feature the unveiling of the Regina Branch UELAC cairn, dedicated to the Loyalist descendants who helped settle the Province of Saskatchewan. It will be built using stones from many of their homesteads from all over Saskatchewan and will also include stones from their Ontario beginnings. The unveiling will be followed by a short tour of the recently renovated Wascana Lake and other city highlights. Afterwards, join us for a wine and cheese reception back at the Ramada Hotel.

Tour A will highlight The RCMP academy where you will see the Sgt. Major’s Parade and Band on the Parade Square in front of the Chapel. This Parade and inspection by the Sgt. Major has been held continuously since 1888. The Chapel is the oldest building in Regina built in 1882-83 and a stroll through the museum will be very informative and historical. A gift shop featuring RCMP, Regina and Saskatchewan souvenirs is available on site. The tour will also encompass Government House where the Lieutenant Governor performs many of her duties. It also houses a fully furnished historical museum set up like it was at the turn of the century.

Tour B will take us to a working wheat farm with a seed operation at Grand Coulee (Saskatchewan’s Grand Canyon). See close up the farm machinery used to farm this modern grain farm. You can have your picture taken with a combine worth half a million dollars! This farm produces certified seed, which is sold to other farmers. The tour will also include a short rural drive and a viewing of a flax roasting operation.

Sunday worship will be held in the Knox Metropolitan. This former Methodist Church was the first church of any denomination built in Regina, established in November 1882, with the impressive present building constructed in 1906. Following our church service, we will have brunch at the "Hotel Saskatchewan". It was opened in1926-27 and is the home of all Royal Visitors when they travel to the Queen City. The Royal Suite has its own 40 place settings of Wedgewood China. It also boasts an emergency diesel-powered back up generator that is actually a U-boat engine.

Click here for the conference itinerary.