Try Something "Old" at Culture Days 2016

By: Shelley Fayant October, 2016

In Saskatchewan, the theme was “Try something new at Culture Days” but in the town of Allan the theme could very well have been “try something old”.

The community’s Culture Days celebration on September 30, 2016, featured heritage-themed activities like potato stamping and blacksmithing.

According to Shirley Frydenlund, one of the driving forces behind Allan’s Culture Days event, the town really wanted to celebrate its history and pioneering spirit. “It’s so important to pass this on to the younger generation,” she says. “They really enjoy learning about what their parents and grandparents did long ago.”

She points to the woodworking stations as an example of the thirst young people have for knowledge about their roots. “We had seven different woodworking stations set up with old-fashioned hand tools and they were busy all the time. The same thing with the potato stamping activity – kids were visiting multiple times, bringing new people along with them.”

Another highlight is the community’s vintage quilts that are on display. One quilt dates back to 1928 while the other one is from the early 1930s. Frydenlund points to these items as examples of the community’s Intangible Cultural Heritage. “The quilt squares were signed by the community members who made them, so we were able to research their names and through that, stitch together some pieces of our community history.”

"It's so important to pass this on to the younger generation. They really enjoy learning about what their parents and grandparents did long ago."

Over 300 people attended Allan’s Culture Days including people from neighbouring communities as well as Neil Fisher, aka the Saskatchewanderer. Frydenlund credits the success of the community’s celebration to the hard work and commitment of over 50 volunteers and the nine members of the Culture Days organizing committee.

To get a taste of Culture Days in Allan, you can check out the community’s promotional video. 

From Abernethy to Yorkton, people across the province checked out the free, hands-on arts and cultural activities offered in nearly 40 Saskatchewan communities. More information on Culture Days can be found online at