2013 was another successful season for the Bell Barn Society. The Barn was open from 10am to 4pm for a total of 109 days from the Victoria Day weekend to Labour Day plus weekends in September, and by appointment at other times. Approximately 3,100 people visited the Barn, about half through daily admissions, and the remainder in rentals and special events. The majority of daily visitors were from Saskatchewan, approximately 25% from other provinces and 5% from outside Canada.
Two University students and a number of local High School students were hired to operate the Barn on a daily basis. Their duties also included looking after the shelterbelt trees, assisting with the Lobster Supper and Annual Dinner Auction, and giving guided tours to school classes and other visitors.
In May 2013 the Society hosted another very successful five course Lobster Dinner with 200 people attending, this has become an annual event.
The Society used the Barn to host a Barn Dances in June, July, August, and September.
In July we also hosted our Annual Dinner Auction with 200 people in attendance. This was our last Dinner Auction for a while and included our ‘Mortgage Burning Ceremony’.
The Bell Barn continues to be a work in progress and last year we planted a number of trees in the grounds, built some picnic tables and expanded the vegetable garden. Some outside exhibits were also added including a Threshing Machine, Horse Drawn Disc and Cultivator, and a walk behind Plough.
- "Barn Boss" Jerry Willerth at the Dinner Auction
Jerry Willerth - a Founding Director of the Bell Barn Society - 9 Aug 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Jerry Willerth was been an extremely active participant in the Bell Barn Project (2006-2010), and has since taken over responsibility for the Barn's day-to-day operation and maintenance. As such, he is known as the "Barn Boss" - a well deserved title.
- Andrew and Jill Scheer attend the Bell Barn Lobster Supper
Supper in the Loft - 25 May 2013 (Photo by Kay Dixon) - Andrew Sheer, Member of Parliament, and Speaker of the House of Commons, and his wife Jill enjoy another Lobster Supper in the Loft of the Bell Barn.
- Auction items at the Dinner Auction
Guests view quilts on display in the Loft - 9 Aug. 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - A variety of items are donated every year for the annual Dinner Auction. These donations are gratefully appreciated by the Society.
- Auction Ringman selling an item at the Dinner Auction
Several ringmen help sell auction items during the Auction - 9 Aug. 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Auction ringmen play an important role at any auction, helping to keep track of bids and adding to the overall vibrancy of auction atmosphere.
- Autioneer Ken McDonald at the Dinner Auction
Ken McDonald working crowd in the Loft - 9 Aug. 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Auctioneer Ken McDonald has sold hundreds of items for the Bell Barn Society since the first Dinner Auction was held in the Indian Head Memorial Hall in 2007.
- Barn Dance in the Bell Barn Loft
Another barn dance - 27 July 2013 (Photo by Kay Dixon) - Guests enjoy another Barn Dance in the Loft of the Bell Barn. These dances have become a favourite summer event in the region.
- Bell Barn Society Executive
The Executive in the Loft of the Barn - 22 May 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Bell Barn Society Executive - May 2013: Top to Bottom, left to right: Connie Billett, Frank Korvemaker (advisor), Kay Dixon, Lori Tourscher, Stew Wass, Ben Friesen, Jan Delage, David Powell, Maurice Delage, Jerry Willerth. (Missing: Andrea Jones and Sandy Smith-Windsor, as well as Guy Lafond, who died April 26th.)
- Board members at the Annual Volunteers Appreciation Night
Savouring the Bar B Q and other refreshments in the Loft - 2 Oct. 2013 (Photo by Kay Dixon) - Volunteers and staff keep the Bell Barn operating throughout the year. Their commitment is sincerely appreciated.
- Board members Shirley & Stew Wass seat dinner guests at the Dinner-Auction
Helping guests find their seats in the Bell Barn Loft is just one of the many tasks undertaken by volunteers - 9 Aug 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Stew and Shirley Wass have been active members of the Society since its founding in 2006. Like so many other members, twelve years later, their enthusiastic support for the project has not diminished.
- Desert at the Bell Barn Dance
Tasty morsels to end the evening - 28 Sept 2013 (Photo by Kay Dixon) - After the dancing and lunch, a delicious supply of deserts awaited the dancers at the Bell Barn Dance.
- Dinner Auction Ticket for 2013
Dinner-Auction for 9 August 2013 - The Dinner Auction was sold out for every dinner held between 2007 and 2013.
- Doreen Willerth sells tickets for raffle items at the Dinner Auction
Raffle Items have been a popular aspect of every Dinner- Auction. (Photo by Bruce Neill) - In addition to live and silent auction sales, there is also a raffle for selected items. Each year these items are very popular among patrons.
- Guy Lafond (1953-2013)
Bell Barn Society supporter, and Board Member (2012-2013) (Photo by Bruce Neill) - For three decades Dr. Guy Lafond specialized in the science of agricultural research at the Indian Head Experimental Farm, and developed a world-wide reputation for his agricultural knowledge. A strong community supporter, he also assisted the Bell Barn Society during various functions, and joined the Board of Directors in 2012. He died of cancer on April 26, 2013.
- Kay Dixon burning the mortgage at the Dinner Auction
Society Chair Kay Dixon proudly burns the Mortgage - 9 Aug. 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - For three years the Society raised funds to pay off the loan it took out in 2009 to complete reconstruction of the Bell Barn in time for the July 2010 Grand Opening. That loan is now fully paid off, and the Society operates in the black.
- Ken McDonald, Don McMorris and Jerry Willerth at the Dinner Auction
The Auctioneer, the Politician and the Barn Boss - 9 Aug. 2013 (Photo by Bruce Neill) - Since 2006 Ken, Don and Jerry have each played important roles in ensuring that the Bell Bran Project succeeded, and continues as a vibrant regional community venue.