On Oct. 18, Drumheller business owners gathered at the Badlands Community Facility for the Chamber of Commerce's Business Excellence Awards Gala.
This year's Small Business of the Year Award went to Sublime Food & Wine. Dennis and Stasha Standage opened the Drumheller favourite six years ago. They beat out Ivy's Awesome Kitchen and Bistro and Athens Greek Restaurant for the award. Stasha Standage is proud of how far they've come since 2011.
"This is amazing," she revealed. "It makes us feel pretty darn loved around this community. We work really hard and to be recognized, it's a very big pat on the back."
This year's Large Business of the Year Award went to Western GM. The dealership was up against Canalta and Reality Bytes for the award this year.
"Do you know what this means?" asked Doug Lubinski, General Manager of Western GM. "This means that there are people in the community where it's not the money we spend, it's not the advertising we do. This is coming from people who enjoy what we're doing in the community. People enjoy coming into our dealership. That's what I see from this award."
The Most Promising New Business Award this year went to Escape This Drumheller. Chris and Tara Schellenberg won the award over The Chopped Leaf and The Stuffed Kilt. Chris said it felt amazing to win.
"Right now, it is the icing on the cake at this moment," said Schellenberg. "With us starting the business and with the support that we have, it's more proof that we're doing the right thing, and we're taking the steps that are going to make this business last a long time here in the valley."
This year's Arts, Culture & Community Award went to a retailer that has been nominated five times in the past. Mike and Lynn Fabrick own Dry Canyon Collectables. This year, they held a Canada Day Powwow behind the BCF.
"This is amazing," said Lynn Fabrick. "We have been nominated and a finalist for five years now. So, this is huge. It's a tremendous honour to be nominated and a finalist every year, but this was just tremendous."
The BCF itself won this year's Diversity Leadership Award. Dr. Ritesh Ram snagged the last award of the night -- the Business Professional of the Year Award. His staff nominated him for this year's award and, true to the selflessness they described, he said his award was entirely their doing and that he couldn't have won it without them.