Christine Fitzgerald opened CR Trenz in Grenfell, Sask., seven years ago as a life-changing project to give her new purpose.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Small-town store closure devastates owner

Saskatchewan entrepreneur wonders if her business will be able to recover once the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted

The tears flow. It’s all just too much: the store closure due to COVID-19, the disappointed customers, the inability to get new merchandise, the bills. Christine Fitzgerald has faced many challenges in her life, but few have compared to this — a pandemic that has put her entire life savings at risk. The Grenfell, Sask., […] Read more

Andi and Alex Ray have 182 chickens and collect as many as 10 dozen eggs a day.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Grandfather-inspired chicken project thrives

Two Saskatchewan youngsters turn Andi & Alex’s Farm Fresh Eggs into a booming business, gathering up to 10 dozen eggs a day

CREELMAN, Sask.— It all started with a chicken coop built by Grandpa. Last spring, Andi and Alex Ray’s grandfather, John Ray, decided his grandkids would benefit from having a chicken project in their shared farmyard. The grandkids embraced the idea, starting with one brand-new coop and 60 laying hens. One year later, nine-year-old Andi and […] Read more

Diane and Danny Kotylak continue the farming lifestyle taught to them by their parents.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Love of a lifetime starts with a gift of farming

On the Farm: The choice to farm came naturally for Danny and Diane Kotylak, but starting up wasn’t without obstacles

CANDIAC, Sask. — It all started with a birthday gift — a quarter of land. Danny Kotylak knew he’d be a farmer early in life. With his grandmother gifting him his first quarter section, one-half cultivated and one-half pasture, it was like destiny came calling. “After that, my parents gave me six Simmental heifers to […] Read more


Kate Horsman delivers free lunch to the isolated Poelen family as part of a program launched by the Indian Head Bakery in Indian Head, Sask.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Sask. bakery treats the isolation blues

The bakery in Indian Head, Sask., delivers hot lunches to families forced to stay at home because of COVID-19 measures

INDIAN HEAD, Sask. — COVID-19 is hitting Alison Poelen’s family hard. The single mother of three boys has lost her entire income and she has to wait several weeks to find out about Employment Insurance benefits. But with one ring of her doorbell late last month, the whole family’s spirits were lifted. The Indian Head […] Read more

Sara Rissling and her daughter, Lily, offer some affection to the family farm’s pet cow. The Holstein is often the mother to the farm’s orphaned calves.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Tragedy opens path back to the farm

A young Saskatchewan woman thought 
she was leaving the family farm for good, 
but life had something else in mind

KENDAL, Sask. — Sara Rissling has always loved animals and rural life, but taking over the family farm wasn’t something she had planned. In 2004, her husband Kevin’s job had taken her young family to Tisdale, Sask., where he was the province’s youngest Bank of Montreal manager at age 24. Sara’s life with a two-year-old […] Read more


Rob and Jacquie Marshall at their Salisbury Lane Country Store in Wolseley, Sask.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Old-fashioned soap recipe starts business

First batches were based on a simple formula found in a grandmother’s scrapbook; they were later naturally enhanced

WOLSELEY, Sask. — Jacquie Marshall doesn’t do anything half way. Her type-A personality led her to excellence in nursing for 25 years, and it’s now the driving force behind her success in the soap business. Whatever the Toronto native takes on is done with 100 percent effort, and the same can be said for her […] Read more

Wolseley artist Marilynn Malo has turned her attention from water colours to quilting.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Painter’s new muse: not your granny’s quilts

Most of Sask. artist’s work are art quilts designed for hanging on walls, but she will also make bedding and lap blankets

WOLSELEY, Sask. — Acclaimed prairie artist Marilynn Malo has painted some of Saskatchewan’s signature works of art over the last 30 years. Her stone houses, weathered barns and farm-inspired still-life works have earned her wide acclaim, including a two-year touring show through the Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Councils called Women’s Work and a painting in […] Read more

Carson Miller, left, and Eric Pearce, were both teammates of Adam Herold.  |  Christalee Froese photo

Junior hockey team honours fallen teammate

Members of the Prince Albert Raiders visit Sask. town to pay their respects to a young player who died in April’s Humboldt Broncos bus crash

MONTMARTRE, Sask. — The Prince Albert Raiders stepped onto the ice in Adam Herold’s hometown rink earlier this month to pay tribute to a defenceman who should have been in the lineup. Adam Herold was killed in the Humboldt Broncos’ bus crash on April 6 before he could make his dream of playing fulltime with […] Read more


Ronan Wylie Heslip was selling his bath bombs recently at a craft sale in Indian Head, Sask. Christalee Froese photo

Ten-year-old entrepreneur is the bomb

The Sask. youngster takes over the family kitchen and turns his ‘obsession with bath bombs’ into a booming business

INDIAN HEAD, Sask.—Ronan Wylie Heslip could sell ice to polar bears. At age 10, he has the sales ability of a professional. “I was so impressed with this young man,” said customer Cheryl Huber of Katepwa, Sask. Huber walked away with several bath bombs from Ronan Wylie’s Wonders Bath Bomb Emporium, as well as hope […] Read more

Brian Ironmonger stamps all of his saddle decorations by hand, one stamp at a time. Christalee Froese photo

Craftsman remembers a life in the saddle

Brian Ironmonger knows how to make saddles. His 45 years in the business have taught him that the best leather comes from Curwensville, Pennsylvania, and that the most balanced saddle trees are made from north-slope ponderosa pine in Monticello, Utah. Ironmonger has made hundreds of saddles for hundreds of riders, from Canadian reined cow horse […] Read more