A summer tradition of gathering around a fire with friends and making music will be brought to life at the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games with the Firelight Festival.
Each of the four festival nights will have a specific theme woven into the evening’s activities. It starts with the Energy night on Aug. 10 to celebrate the energy industry and the spirit of the people in southwest Saskatchewan.
The construction and engineering company Burns & McDonnell is the sponsor of Energy night. The company is a gold level sponsor of the Summer Games and a cheque presentation of $15,000 took place on July 25 at Kinetic Exhibition Park, where the Firelight Festival will be located.
Burns & McDonnell is managing the construction and procurement process for SaskPower's new Chinook Power Station near Swift Current, and site project manager Dewey Cook felt the company’s sponsorship of Energy night at the festival is very appropriate.
“Western Canada Summer Games is a big thing for Swift Current coming up here,” he said. “We understood that and we were just glad to have the opportunity to be able to participate in that, especially Energy night. We're here building the energy plant. So it just made sense that should be our night.”
He noted it is an important part of the Burns & McDonnell corporate philosophy to give back to the community. The company’s contribution to various causes in the Swift Current area during the construction of the power station is already into six figures.
“It's been a great experience,” he said. “Normally we don't get this opportunity being so close to a community, because usually we build these things out in the middle of nowhere. Here we're close to town and we get to be part of active life. It's just great.”
At the peak of the construction phase there were about 750 workers, but construction is nearly complete and about 200 to 225 people are now employed at the site. The start-up activities for the power station is already under way, and there will soon be some steam and noise when pipes are blown clean.
Friends of the Games Director Scott Cassidy appreciated the company’s contribution towards the Summer Games.
“They have a fantastic management group here that moved to Swift Current basically and really taken ownership of being a community business in town,” he said. “This is not the only thing that they have contributed, but it's almost the last thing that they'll do as far as the project is winding down. This is a great way for them to celebrate the impact they've made in this community.”
Cassidy’s role in helping to secure business sponsorship for the Western Canada Summer Games is also drawing to a close, and he said it has been a valuable experience.
“What I've really found empowering of this whole experience is that it's been fun to tell the story of the southwest,” he said. “It's been fun to just tell people in different parts of the country or even North America or the globe of what we're all about here, what the Games mean to us and what they're going to make as far as an impact for our community.”
The Firelight Festival takes place during four nights of the Summer Games from 5-11 p.m. at Kinetic Exhibition Park. Energy night is on Aug. 10, Roots night takes place Aug. 12, the Down on the Farm evening is on Aug. 14 and the Multicultural night is on Aug. 16.
Admission is free and there will be kids activities, food trucks, and various musical and cultural performances during each night.
Each evening will conclude with a featured musical performance. Nêhiyawak, a band from Edmonton playing indigenous indie-rock, will headline Energy night. The other headline performers are Bears of Hazenmore and Megan Nash (Aug. 12), Belle Plaine and Blake Berglund (Aug. 14), and Twin Flames (Aug. 16).
Over 1,700 athletes, coaches, officials and mission staff from Alberta, Manitoba, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Saskatchewan, and Yukon will attend the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games from Aug. 9-18. For more information about the event, to buy tickets or to volunteer, visit the website http://2019wcsg.ca