Saskatchewan farming couple turn grain bins into rentable cabins

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Saskatchewan farming couple turn grain bins into rentable cabins
WATCH ABOVE: A retired farming couple in Saskatchewan has spent the last two years converting their grain bins into rentable cabins. – Jun 21, 2019

The official start to summer means provincial parks, cottages, and campgrounds across Saskatchewan will soon be booking up for the season.

However, a growing number of Canadians are looking to spend more time outdoors while still enjoying the comforts of their own home – that’s where glamorous camping or ‘glamping‘ comes into play.

Julie and Dennis Hilling turned their lifelong passion for farming into a new business venture by converting their grain bins into rentable cabins.

“I have so many people contacting me saying they want to sleep in a bin,” Julie said about Bin There Campground.

It took more than two years to transform the six silos on their property, located north of Moose Jaw, into a campground.

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The two-storey cabins feature queen sized beds, heating, air conditioning, and a skylight.

The retired farmers have also converted their 1,000 square-foot seed cleaning plant into an event centre for campers.

“This is basically a camping facility but for people who don’t want to rough it too much,” Julie said.

According to Kampgrounds of America’s 2019 North American Camping Report, more than a million households in North America tried camping for the first time last year, and 46 per cent of Canadian campers say they hope to try glamping this year.

Jonathan Potts, from Tourism Saskatchewan, said it’s a growing industry across the province as people look for alternative types of accommodation.

“We’re seeing our provincial and national parks, as well as private businesses, offering new types of experiences to get people back outdoors,” Potts said.

Yurts, climate controlled domes, teepees, and shack tents are just some of the unique camping options available in the province.

Potts said it’s a popular option for tourists choosing to stay closer to home rather than booking a foreign holiday.

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“People are coming to understand there are a lot of great things to do all around Saskatchewan,” Potts said.

While some camping enthusiasts may turn their noses up to the frills, others are embracing the glamping movement.

“According to Facebook, I’ve had over 300,000 posts or shares on my page,” Julie said. “We had no idea it would get this big.”

A sign that thousands of outdoor enthusiasts are ready to say “‘bin’ there, done that.”

Bin There Campground opens to the public at the beginning of July.

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