...just testing whether LATTA-L is still alive and well - it's a slow day, folks ...
(This article was published in a local paper recently. The name Govan, Sask., caught my
attention as branch 13 Lattas virtually founded the prairie town and lived there for
generations. The most notable was Samuel Latta, my father's cousin, who was Minister
of Education in Saskatchewan for over 20 years. It's likely that this little house on
the prairie was once owned by a Latta.)
Free concert tickets, hats and compact discs are standard fare in
station giveaways, but a Victoria station went one better Friday by
awarding a three-bedroom, two-storey house. But, since the offer came from
a popular rock station known for its crazy contests and gimmicks, you knew
there had to be a catch.
Although Victoria is one of Canada's most expensive real estate markets,
where an average house costs close to $400,000, the prize house was a ramshackle, prewar
model in Govan, Sask., population 276--a 19-hour drive from B. C.'s capital.
"I've just been laughing all day at the whole situation," said the winner,
Melanie Alexander of Victoria. "From the very beginning, I thought the
house would be in Victoria, but everybody kept saying, 'There's no way
somebody would give away a $250,000 house.'"
For five weeks, the station promoted its "free house" contest but failed
to mention it was a little house on the prairie--a $5,000 farmhouse in
Govan, 104 kilometres northwest of Regina.
"We have no budget," said Rick Everett, program director at 100.3 The Q.
"Five grand doesn't buy anything here in Victoria, so we had to go a bit
farther out. So we ended up finding a lovely place in Govan... The five
finalists took it great."
Rather than take the house, Alexander opted for a $9,000 cash payment.