The Qu’Appelle Valley has a rich cultural and historical presence that is recognized throughout the province of Saskatchewan. The Valley was the crossroads of a number of historic trails that traversed the North-West Territories during settlement. The Valley is home to many cultural activities throughout the year and there are numerous historical landmarks and sites of significant importance.
Life in the Qu’Appelle Valley revolves around the history of the Four Lakes; Pasqua Lake, Echo Lake, Mission Lake and Katepwa Lake. Residents value the lakes for their ability to provide food, recreation, economic opportunities, as a place to ‘get away’ and for spiritual healing. First Nation communities and municipalities alike realize the importance of the Four Lakes, both historically and into the future.
Members of the Calling Lakes Planning Commission started meeting in 2008, with an idea to develop a new plan that would preserve the natural resources in the Qu’Appelle Valley and to ensure that development patterns would not be a detriment to the quality of the water and the surrounding lakeshores. In 2013 the District Plan was approved by the Ministry of Government Relations at the Government of Saskatchewan. The Commission is made up of 6 member municipalities, and First Nations and general community involvement and support for the policies in the District Plan continues to be crucial.
Preservation of the Four Lakes is at the heart of the District Plan,
but relationship building with community groups and First Nation and Metis communities within the region as well as heritage preservation is also significant. The Commission is determined to work with all of their neighbours for the betterment of the region. Collaboration and cooperation is encouraged at every Commission meeting. The philosophy of the Planning Commission has been, and will continue to be, if anyone wants to join the Commission at the table to discuss development issues in and around the Valley they are more than welcome. The Commission wants to see their neighbours succeed and they want development to occur in a way that does not impede or hinder the natural landscape or the beauty of the Valley.