Drumheller, AB (From Jason Blanke- Drumheller Online)
The Drumheller Dragons are, of course, associated with hockey but now they are also associated with grain farming.
The Dragons, in conjunction with a number of partners, are currently seeding about 120 acres of land next to Dinosaur Trail Golf Course with wheat in their “Field of Dreams”. This project will benefit the Dragons and Blair Christianson, Owner and Chairman of the Drumheller Dragons, shares that the funding from projects like this is essential in the operation of the team. “In the last number of years, even prior to COVID, we’ve been looking for one or two big things that we can do for the team as fundraisers. Fundraising is a big part of our budget and this is a great thing that has came together. Hopefully all the sponsors and stakeholders here, find value in it as well and it can be something we can do year after year.” A couple of Junior A teams in Saskatchewan have done a similar fundraising project in years previous, so the Dragons thought it would be something to try in our area.
One of the Dragons partners in this project is Brandt Tractor. Jason Morgan, Sales Manager for both Drumheller and Trochu locations of Brandt felt that this partnership would benefit both the Dragons and Brandt. “Dustin (Edwards of the Dragons) came and talked to me one day and said that he may have an opportunity to plan to put a crop in the ground to raise some money for the team. We’re excited to be part of it and honoured they had come and spoke to us first.” Brandt will use the field for training for their staff on new John Deere equipment during seeding and hopefully harvest later this fall.
Another partner of this project is Westview Co-op as they will be providing fuel for seeding and fertilizer for the crop. Leigh Dudley, Division Manager Ag & Energy for Westview Co-op notes the importance for them to be involved. “Not very often, in the last couple of years, that we’ve had the opportunity to get out. We always try and support as much as we possibly can in the communities we live in, and work in.” This project will benefit Westview Co-op by testing out some of their products to showcase for their membership.
Koch Fuel Products is also supporting this venture with providing fuel for harvest later this year. Dragons Alumnus and now Sales Manager with Koch Fuel in Red Deer, Brandon Knelsen, notes that being involved with the Dragons is important for them. ” I think when something like this happens, and the community rallies around the Dragons during these tough times, we want to be there for our community. Hockey was a big part of my life. Junior hockey is pretty special because the community has to embrace it in small towns. Hockey can bring communities together, like all sports.”
Providing hail insurance for the crop is important and BrokerLink is happy to be able to support this fundraiser through their insurance. Jared Potter, Commercial Account Executive based at BrokerLink Drumheller, and also a Dragon alumnus, is happy to be able to support a fundraising venture like this. “We like to sponsor locally and with the Dragons in particular. When this opportunity came out, it was a no brainer for BrokerLink.” Protection is key for this land, especially with the amount of hail we see in our area every year.
Fox Coulee Farms is also providing spraying for the field. Seeding is beginning this week and the Dragons, like most of our farmers in the region, are praying for rain and hoping for a bumper crop this fall.
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