Through the Years: ‘Mad Trapper Showdown,’ ‘Dog Island Derby,’ and diamonds

Snippets from January 20th Lakeside Leaders


Canada was 125, and 12 people from Slave Lake, Widewater, and Kinuso received commemorative medals.

A dog sled race was scheduled near Slave Lake in February. It was dubbed the ‘Dog Island Derby’ and was to be put on by the International Dog Sled Racing Association. Teams were expected to come from Wabasca, Whitecourt, Lac La Biche, and the Northwest Territories

The Sunrise Project, which provided a university transfer course to Slave Lake and area students, was 10 years old. At the time, 64 students were working on their first two years of Arts and Education studies in Slave Lake and Grouard.

Slave Lake’s winter carnival was coming up. It was to include a torch light parade, Thunderpot race, ‘two-bit carnival,’ dance, the Junior Forest Warden’s winter race, a ‘Mad Trapper Showdown,’ chili cook-off, pancake breakfast, and family skating party.

There was a market for burbot, “the ugliest fish in the west,” and the government was testing Utikuma Lake for commercial fishing.


Slave Lake, High Prairie, and Wabasca were part of a new Child and Family Services Authority region. This was a new region called Neegan Awas’sak (First the Children). The office was in the Lakeland Building in Slave Lake, and Neegan Awas’sak had the goal to be more accessible.

The English Pub in the Sawridge Hotel was having a karaoke night on Thursdays. It included a 16-week competition to win the grand prize.

The Slave Lake Health Complex planned to paint a mural. It was looking for pictures and stories of health care from 1900 until the late 1990s.

The Lakeside Leader held a ‘Write On Contest’ for area schools. There were various categories including ‘Creative Classified Content’ for Grade 1 to 3. This was 200 words or less on the possible story behind a classified ad. Grade 4 to 6 were asked to be ‘Junior Reporters’ about a sports event or field trip, and Grade 7 to 12 were asked to write a Letter to the Editor.

A company was sampling for diamonds near Red Earth Creek. They found some, but not enough to build a mine.

The Slave Lake writer’s group was about a year old, but likely to close.


Pam Gullion sent The Leader photos of a lynx family in the Marten Hills.

The Slave Lake Native Friendship Centre hosted First Nations hand games. This was an exhibition from Driftpile First Nation.

The Nine Mile Creek Recreation Area had a new sign. Building of the trails started three or four years earlier, with the trails growing each year.

There was an advertisement for the 6th annual Frostfest. It was to be February 8 to 15. Events were to include hayrides, outdoor hockey, free food, and sledding. Groups were encouraged to host more activities.

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