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Social Life

The Saint Vincent Pool Hall

Life in St. Vincent is centered around agriculture in much the same way as it was at the turn of the century. Although better equipment, bigger farms and modern techniques give the small community many advantages over their ancestors, the attachment to farming as a way of life is still very much apparent in the community.

Intense manual labour, social isolation, the slow arrival of modern conveniences—farm life was far from easy. Therefore, in the early days of settlement, the residents of St. Vincent relied upon cooperation with their neighbours to make life on the prairies easier:

Ladies taking weaving lessons in Saint Vicent in 1944.

“There were bees for building, threshing, rug-making, cutting firewood, and bees for just about any reason people needed work done. Besides helping a neighbor through a task, bees also served as a social event, making the task more enjoyable.” —Excerpt reprinted from “Souvenirs: Saint Vincent 1906-1981” with permission from Saint Vincent Historical Society.

A firewood sawing bee.

In modern St. Vincent, clubs, religious organizations and social groups continue to bring residents together. Sports and recreational groups also provide an opportunity for residents to participate in leisure activities in a French-speaking environment, and parents have access to French-language education for their children. Baseball, wrestling and boxing were all popular diversions in St. Vincent and dancing was a favourite pastime; a dance hall was erected on the edge of Lake St. Vincent, one of the many in rural Alberta. Likewise, local businesses that provide a number of essential services maintain ties with one another through the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce.

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