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Thursday, 14 July 2011 13:09

Fort Walsh National Historic Site of Canada: NWMP Drill Demonstration & Historic Trades Day

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The sights, sounds, tastes and smells of old Fort Walsh will come bursting forth from the past on Saturday July 23rd, 2011 during the annual NWMP Drill Demonstration & Historic Trades Day.

This year’s event will honour the 100th Anniversary of Parks Canada, as well as the 125th Anniversary of the RCMP Veterans Association.

The event will run between 10 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Once again the day will feature Parks Canada staff and volunteers in NWMP uniform firing period black powder rifles, as well as the fort’s Nine Pound Muzzle Loading Field Rifle (cannon).

There will also be; wagon rides, children’s activities, blacksmithing, woodstove cooking, capote making, finger weaving, beading, and Métis dance demonstrations.

A highlight of the day will be the visit of approximately 50 RCMP Cadets from the RCMP training academy at Depot Division in Regina.

There will also be a number of representatives of the RCMP Veterans Association who will present a bronze statue to Fort Walsh NHSC in commemoration of the 125th Anniversary of the RCMP Veterans Association. The presentation is scheduled to occur at around 1 p.m.

The presentation with have dual significance to the site.  Firstly, many of the men who served at old Fort Walsh in the 1870’s & 1880’s were among the first members of the Veterans Association.  Secondly, the statue being presented is titled “The Riding Master,” and depicts Cpl. Fred Rasmussen (who many local oldtimers will remember for his association with the RCMP Remount Ranch horse breeding program at Fort Walsh in the 1950’s & 60’s).

The day will also see the opening of the new Sick Horse Stable & NWMP Veterinarian Office exhibit.  The exhibit, designed by Parks Canada’s Military Curator Grant Tyler, will provide visitor with another portal back to the 1880’s, and opens another building within the fort’s palisade that has never before been accessible to the public.

A barbecue lunch will be available on the grounds.

Fort Walsh NHSC is located within Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park.  The site is 55kms southwest of Maple Creek, Sask. on Highway #271. features a map of the area.

This is Fort Walsh NHSC’s largest event of the season.  Bring the entire family and spend the day immersed in RCMP heritage while you relive 1880’s life on the Canadian frontier!

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