From a home fit for hobbits all the way to dragons made of snow, here are Global News’ top 10 viral videos to come out of Saskatchewan in 2020.
The list kicks off with a video near the beginning of the novel coronavirus pandemic in March when people were getting used to the term “uncertain times.”
“There’s a lot of fear, a lot of anxiety, and we’ve been thinking at the church: What do we do to help people get through this?” St. Anne’s Catholic Church priest Matthew Ramsay said.
The Catholic community in Saskatoon took their faith to new heights as Ramsay blessed the city while flying thousands of feet above in a small plane.
A blue snow dragon on the front yard of a Saskatoon home sparked bystanders’ curiosity in November.
Located on Cairns Avenue, “Snovid” was created by Mel Thompson who had decided to make an even bigger snow sculpture than years past.
The dragon was six feet high, 20 feet long and made blue with food colouring.
She said it was a way to put smiles on people’s faces during pandemic times.
“The response has been amazing,” said Thompson. “A lot of people have been coming out to see him.”
Mike Digout captured footage of the moment a beaver broke through the ice in Saskatoon and it went viral.
The river freezing over near a family of beavers didn’t stop a mother beaver from keeping her home in tip-top condition along the Meewasin Trail.
“It’s been on ABC News and the London Daily Mail. I got a phone call this morning from the New York Post who want to interview me about the beaver video so our little Meewasin Valley Saskatoon mama beaver is probably becoming the most famous beaver in Canada,” Digout said.
“It was on the ground for quite a while,” meteorologist Alysa Pederson said.
The second tornado touched down near Kincaid and Woodrow while the third was spotted just south of Assiniboia.
There were multiple explosions caught on camera at a business in Estevan on the morning of April 6.
Connor Barnstable was working at Performance Machining and said the explosions took place about 180 metres away, near Regens Metals.
“Me and another employee were just working and our one manager said he seen some smoke and flames coming over the Regens’ disposal yard,” Barnstable said.
A spokesperson with the Saskatchewan RCMP said Occupational Health and Safety was investigating.
Many children stopped by to see if they could catch a glimpse of the creatures and dropped off letters to the fictional characters synonymous with author J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.
Scott, Ann Marie and Nathan Harder worked for weeks to build the hobbit home in their front yard on 9th Avenue North. It was equipped with a bridge, solar water fountain, garden and mailbox.
A massive pileup of invasive carp was sparking curiosity among those who frequented an area of Regina last January.
The pileup of fish formed in Wascana Creek near a bridge running through A.E. Wilson Park.
Peter Leavitt, a biology professor at the University of Regina, said the behaviour was not out of character, because water temperatures were rising at the time and, as a result, oxygen levels in the water were going down.
“The fish are running out of oxygen and they’re coming up to the surface — any time they can get access to it — to get a drink of oxygen,” he said.
Video footage captured the setup and punchline to a classic joke: Why did the chicken cross the road?
The video taken in Regina shows the bird running away from a cat on Gordon Road back in August.
Dan Thibault, who shot the clip and posted it on social media, said it was something he never expected to see within city limits.
“It was an interesting thing to see in Albert Park (neighbourhood),” Thibault laughed. “I’m sure that was a house cat (chasing the chicken) that got away from somebody because it looks like it is an expensive one.”
A storm struck the hamlet of Brancespeth, about 50 km southeast of Prince Albert, on June 14.
Winds tore the roof off Marlene and Chris Hovdebo’s house.
“You’d look out the windows and it looks like someone is pouring coke or chocolate milk down the window. You couldn’t see,” Chris said. “A lifetime of work was gone in less than a minute.”
Chris told Global News that he made two phones calls to good friends and around 50 people showed up within half an hour to help them move their belongings out of the damaged structure.
“We live in a good place. We have good friends and family. We’re lucky,” Marlene said.
1) Regina hit by 2 separate snowstorms in October and November
The top spot on this year’s list went to two similar videos about separate snowstorms that hit the Regina area in October and November.
Despite technically still being fall, the city got its first punch from winter as snow, ice and sleet turned a typical morning commute into mayhem for many drivers on Oct. 20.
Police said calls started coming in around 7 a.m., with officers responding to 17 collisions throughout the day.
The second storm occurred on Nov. 8, when travel warnings blanketed the length of the Trans-Canada Highway in Saskatchewan.
A winter storm warning was in effect in Regina, with Environment Canada forecasting 20 to 50 cm of snow to fall by the next day, which was also happened to be the municipal election.
The vote had to be rescheduled until Nov. 13.
– With files from Nathaniel Dove, Jonathan Guignard, Jackie Wilson, Brady Ratzlaff, Mandy Vocke, Jonathan Guignard, Connor O’Donovan, Daniella Ponticelli and Katelyn Wilson