The year was 2008. Dr. William Hendricks approached the Wetaskiwin Health Foundation with the idea of holding a ‘real barn dance’ as a fundraiser in his newly constructed barn. That was the beginning of the annual Wetaskiwin Health Foundation Barn Dance and Pie Social. The event achieved immediate success and outgrew the barn. The following year the Barn dance was moved to the Wetaskiwin Drill Hall, where it continues to be a reminder of what an old-fashioned barn dance was like. The Barn dance has evolved into a gathering of family and friends; young children to elderly dancing to live music; blue jeans, shiny belt buckles, western shirts; and children running around and playing on the straw bales.
The Barn dance is an annual fundraiser for the Wetaskiwin Health Foundation. As the need for healthcare services increases, there is a growing reliance on the Health Foundation (WHF) to make up the short-fall. It is the hard work of the Foundation that helps make the Wetaskiwin Hospital one of the best, if not the best, healthcare facility for a community of this size. Wetaskiwin is extremely fortunate to have a community and surrounding area that cares and supports the efforts to improve healthcare.
Although the official numbers are not in, it was evident by the aggressive bidding in both the silent and live auctions, that the 2013 Wetaskiwin Health Foundation Barn Dance and Pie Social is estimated to have raised between $35 – $40K and was once again, a huge success.
The Barn dance offered something for everyone; rows of tables lined with specially baked delights and treasures; tempting silent auction items; an enthusiastic and exciting live auction; feast catered to by Bob Ronnie, dancing to live music, and the opportunity for guests to dress up in western costumes and be photographed.
Lillian Dykes, Executive Director of the Foundation with a great deal of gratitude in her voice said, “I am grateful to those who attended and supported the event and also to those who worked so hard to make sure the Barn dance was a success. They supported the Foundation and they supported healthcare and this community.”