Right in the Centre - Not much to complain about in rural Manitoba


Ken Waddell

Neepawa Banner & Press

If anyone is bored these days, it sure isn’t the fault of rural Manitoba. Just a week or two ago there were six country fairs in six days. The Ukrainian National Festival was in Dauphin this past weekend. Rockin’ the Fields was in Minnedosa and the ManitobaYouth Beef Round-Up was in Neepawa. Rivers had their recent homecoming and a golf tournament. Rapid City had a golf tournament and it seems like there’s a golf tournament to go to every day at this time of year. Campgrounds are full and if you want a job, just about every farmer in the country is looking for hired help. Construction sites need workers and most businesses could use an extra staff person. This weekend and next, the country is full of events. Most of them aren’t all that expensive to attend either. It’s not so much a matter of what can we do as it is how do we choose what to do?

As I travel around the country, I am struck by how good a lot of facilities are. It’s a tough job to keep the parks, fair grounds and community halls all looking good. I have noticed lately though that a lot of washrooms could sure use a bit more care. I won’t point out any in particular but if you have a park, a community place, business or restaurant, please check the bathroom. I have come across a few that are terrible, most are OK and some are very well kept. But we owe it to ourselves and our customers to have a look around. In the bluntest of terms, it’s a bit annoying when the paper supplies and soap/sanitizer have run out. A lot of toilets, well, just let’s say they could be cleaned better and at least tighten the seats so they don’t buck you off when you sit down. All that upkeep is tough and comes with cost but it isn’t rocket science to keep stuff clean and maintained.

I have seen a lot of crops in the past few days and a lot of cattle. The cattle look good but the pastures need a rain. Judging by what farmers say and by drive-by bale counts, it looks like there will be enough feed this year. That said, we have a lot fewer cows in Manitoba than we did ten years ago. Remember when big round bales came out. People said the large balers and big front end loaders extended the working life of a lot of farmers. But now those extended working lives are coming closer to retirement and there are simply people willing to do all the hard work attached to the cattle industry. That said, all the 4-H shows across the readership area and the Manitoba Youth Beef Round-up this past weekend in Neepawa certainly bodes well for the future beef producers.

As far as the crops are concerned, the farmers say it will be OK but won’t be a bin buster. It’s just been too dry and the wheat and canola aren’t filling out like they might have if the rains had come earlier.

Everybody take care, have some fun in the sun and may all our farm workers be safe this fall. There’s a lot of food to haul in and that is hugely important to our region, the country and the world.

And remember, don’t complain about the farmers, especially when your mouth is full!

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this column are the writer’s personal views and are not to be taken as being the view of the Banner & Press staff.