After more than a decade, Regina’s Waskimo winter festival was back with a bang on Monday.
Thousands gathered at east Wascana Lake to take part in the festival’s revival.
Maurene Kayter is head of the volunteers at Waskimo, and she said a big part of this year’s event is the multiculturalism and welcoming newcomers to Saskatchewan.
“At the end of the day, we’re all one,” explained Kayter. “To have (newcomers) support the community and have them involved in the community is outstanding.”
She said many of the Waskimo volunteers came from various backgrounds, and the best part was coming together to learn about the different cultures around the province.
The day was packed with ice skating, sailing — and even some Harvard Broadcasting shinny.
However, Lianne Daradics did none of those activities; she was busy kick sledding on the frozen lake with her husband and four Golden Retrievers.
She said since most of the snow has melted, except on the lake, it was the perfect opportunity to spend the day doing what she loves.
Daradics said she remembers coming to the festival years ago, and she’s happy it’s back.
“I think it’s good for people to get outside in the winter,” said Daradics. “People tend to just stay in and get depressed and complain how cold it is outside, so this is nice to have an event again that gets everybody outside, busy and active in the wintertime.”
Aside from the outdoor activities, there was also a children’s carnival inside the Conexus Arts Centre — and that’s where you would find Sidney Lee, the Waskimo ice queen.
The 12-year-old said she was thrilled when she was approached to be a part of the festival.
“I was very excited because I was selected,” explained Lee. “(Waskimo) is so exciting because there are so many activities, and it makes me happy to see all the kids smile.”
Despite being inside most of the day, Lee said she enjoyed walking around the carnival, handing out candy and taking photos with children.
Between the young, the old and the dogs, organizers haven’t yet tallied the final attendance numbers. However, it’s estimated Waskimo 2.0 at least reached the goal of 15,000 people.