Meet the Neighbours: Bob & Wilma Dyck
This blog post first appeared on the Element Urban Village project website.
What brings you to Saskatoon and Riversdale?
We both grew up in small towns near Saskatoon, so Saskatoon was always our go-to place for extra shopping and appointments. We both attended the University of Saskatchewan, Wilma in nursing and Bob in pharmacy.
After university we lived in various places across Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Nova Scotia. 25 years ago we returned to Bob's hometown of Biggar, SK to take over the family drugstore. After selling the drugstore in 2011 we knew the future would very likely include a move to a larger centre so considering Saskatoon wasn't much of a stretch. Bob continues to do pharmacy relief work for which Saskatoon is a good central location.
What drew you to Element Urban Village?
We spent several years following developments in Riversdale and have felt drawn to the energy of an area in transition. As we considered other developments in other parts of the city, our eye seemed to always return to Element. When our acreage in Biggar finally sold, we decided we should follow what our hearts seemed to be telling us and we gave Curtis a call. We appreciated his patience in time spent with us, both answering our questions and describing his vision/philosophy of development for Riversdale.
Our favourite "elements" of Element:
- prairie themed design with lots of openness and spaciousness, very much like the land of living skies
- south facing with tons of natural light
- superb use of natural materials throughout
- proximity to the river
What are your favourite parts about the new urban lifestyles you’ve adopted? What are some of your favourite things to do in the neighbourhood?
Definitely the walkability. As well, we enjoy the Farmer's Market, the eclectic options for restaurants and coffeeshops, and our visits with Kaylee. We also enjoy all the activity that goes on at the Legion across the street—every age group, different ethnicities and cultures, and especially the Scottish bagpipe band that plays outside.
How important is the connection to the river to you?
The river is a very important connection for us. Wilma has always felt drawn to the water having lived as a young girl on the banks of the North Saskatchewan, near the ocean in Nova Scotia, and now full circle to the banks of the South Saskatchewan. We both have enjoyed canoeing the lakes of northern Saskatchewan. The river is our main focus whenever we look outside and the luscious green grass next to it just accentuates its beauty. The sparkle of the sun on the water in the morning is picture-perfect. We love all the activities that happen on the river. Even the Prairie Lily paddle wheeler adds a certain elegance!
The trails also provide peaceful tranquility and we love to see how much they are being used—joggers, walkers, bikers, people pushing strollers, exercise groups and different generations of families enjoying being together. Element's close proximity to the canoe launch as well as the bridges is just one more big positive it has going for it!
I understand you have a big family and a number of grandchildren. What do you think they enjoy the most about visiting grandma and grandpa’s new home?
As we considered Element over a year ago, it was important to us that our children have input into our decision. After their tour of the development, they only had good things to say, which gave us one more good reason to continue our consideration.
One of the biggest positives was that there would be so many things for the grandchildren. So far the things they have enjoyed are:
- The acres of green grass in Victoria Park for ball games, lawn games, picnics, and bike riding. Grandpa and Grandma have enjoyed the fact that they did not have to be the ones to maintain the luscious green grass!
- Playgrounds appropriate for different age groups
- Riversdale Pool, family friendly
- Skate park—this is especially for some of the adult children!
- Fable Ice Cream—awesome!
- Looking forward to the opening of the Childrens' Museum
- Lots of coffeeshops/restaurants/stores to discover and explore
Thanks, Bob and Wilma! We're happy to have you at the Village.