The bright red barn was transported all the way from the Morse area, where it operated as Wildflower Acres Gallery & Gift Barn. But now that owners Scott and Vickie Phillips have made Maple Creek their new home, they’ve brought their barn with them.
Moving to town earlier this fall, the Phillips had the intention of eventually setting up their gallery and gift shop here. They soon acquired an acreage a kilometre south of town, and their barn was brought in last Wednesday.
The two artists decided to make the move to be closer to their son Geoff and his family. But the tight-knit arts community was also a good reason to relocate.
“It seems like a really nice arts community here, which is always great, and hopefully we’ll be able to get involved with that, too,” Vickie said.
The couple operated Wildflower Acres on their 23 acres southeast of Morse for eight years, where Vickie made fused and stained glass and Scott did woodworking. They also sold other crafts and giftware in the barn.
While unsure of exactly how old the barn itself is, Vickie guesses it could be 100 years old. Before it was re-purposed as a gift shop, it had its share of livestock inside its walls. Bearing the name Reed Lake Yorkshires, it held pigs at one time, as well as chickens and horses.
“People who showed up to buy things would say they remembered coming here and buying pigs,” Vickie said.
The Phillips decided to buy the property near Morse after moving back to Saskatchewan from Calgary. Raising their family in Lumsden, they missed small-town life in the Prairies. They then renovated the barn, cleaning it up and putting in new wiring and lighting.
Eventually, the couple decided they would like to be closer to Geoff and Connie and see their grandchildren grow up.
“We loved it there and did a lot of work to it, but the opportunity came up to sell it,” Vickie explained.
They are in the process of building a house at their new acreage – including a large shop for Scott to do his woodworking and Vickie to do her fused and stained glass.
With the acreage located along Highway 21 south of town, it is the prime location for those travelling to Cypress Hills Park to stop in and check out the gallery and giftware.
Since moving to town, they haven’t wasted any time getting familiar with their new community. Vickie is already teaching line dancing at the Jasper Centre on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
In the future, the Phillips will consider holding workshops.
They hope to have Wildflower Acres open at its new location in the spring or summer.