Regardless of the time of year, Carlyle is a bustling community with plenty to offer residents and visitors alike.
But during the summer months in particular, it’s an exciting place to be.
Natalie Miller, who is the town’s chief administrative officer, said they get a lot of people who come into the community who spend their summers at Kenosee Lake and White Bear First Nation.
“We have a lot of extra people in the community doing some shopping and spending some time with us, which we really appreciate,” said Miller.
Some special events will be taking place in the summer. The Carlyle Fun Day will happen on Aug. 17, with a kids’ zone, a car show and live entertainment throughout the day on the town’s Main Street.
“The Carlyle Fun Days is a really great community event. There’s a committee that organizes it, but that committee just brings all the different groups together, and provides an organized event for them. It’s all the community members doing what they want to do to support the community.”
The rink hosts a fundraiser, and some of the food vendors are community groups. Most of the entertainment is free.
Miller believes the success of Carlyle Fun Days stems from the town, the rural municipality of Moose Mountain and the business community coming together.
The town’s fire department will have a Raise the Roof Golf Tournament on July 10 in an effort to generate money for a new fire hall.
Later in the year, two marquee events will be happening. The first is the Homespun Craft Show and Sale, scheduled for Sept. 21 and 22, which has been billed as the Biggest Little Craft Show in Saskatchewan. The craft show is in the arena and the quilt show happens in the town’s Memorial Hall.
The other event is the Dickens Village Festival, in which Carlyle will be transformed into a Victorian-era village from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. The festival will happen Dec. 6 and 7.
The slogan of the town is Carlyle has It, and Miller believes they always live out that mantra.
“You have pretty much everything you need. I’m not sure what you’d have to leave town to get. We have a little bit of everything, and we’re able to support our community. It’s a thriving community, and there’s lots of activities for kids and families and lots of sports teams. Every group is well established.”
The swimming pool, located in the Lions campground, is a big attraction to the community. It’s a junior Olympic-sized pool with a zero entry, some spray structures and a small slide. It’s open daily during the summer months, and is popular with lane swimmers and for swimming lessons.
The town also has a nine-hole golf course at the east edge of the town along Highway 13.
Recreation and cultural groups are also doing well.
The business community is strong and diverse. A new furniture store, Fireside Furniture and Appliances, is the most recent addition to the business community.
Hardware, groceries, clothing, vehicles, automobile parts, agriculture implements and much more can be purchased in the town. There is also a healthy collection of restaurants, with fast food and dining options.
“I think we’re in a great location,” said Miller. “We’re central to a lot of places. The business community is really good at making you feel welcome, and drawing the crowd in. They’ve had different bus tours come in to arrange a shopping day.”
The town has done its part to attract businesses, as they offer tax abatements with a tiered structure in the first three years for companies coming into the community.
Miller has been the chief administrative officer for two years, and has been living in the community for 10 years. It has such a great sense of community, and there’s a big emphasis on families.
She grew up in a small town that was on the decline, especially after its school closed.
But she doesn’t see the same problems existing in Carlyle.
“I just feel like there’s so much to offer for young families and to get involved, if you want, it’s there. We’ve really made ourselves home here. We came not knowing anybody, so we paved our way and feel really welcome by the community and all that it has to offer.”
And they’re happy to say they live in Carlyle.