Red Deer RCMP Julie Letal stands beside her 'detainees

Red Deer RCMP Julie Letal stands beside her 'detainees

Visiting family being ‘detained’ for Westerner Days

A Utah family will enjoy the hospitality of cowboy culture as the guests of Westerner Days Fair and Exposition.

A Utah family will enjoy the hospitality of cowboy culture as the guests of Westerner Days Fair and Exposition.

The Wilson family of Stansbury Park, Utah, were apprehended and arrested around 1:30 p.m. in Gasoline Alley on Tuesday.

Trevor Wilson was filling up the car with gas while his wife Barb, and two daughters Bailey, 17, and Sydney, 13, were in the store.

“They pulled up when I was filling up with gas,” said Wilson, a high school athletic director. “I thought I did something wrong. I thought I was in trouble.”

The family had been in Red Deer since Thursday for a wedding and were about to hit the highway for home.

This was their second trip to Red Deer but they were unaware of the “arrest-a-family” tourism promotion.

Every year, a family with out-of-province licence plates is “arrested” on Hwy 2 and detained as guests of Westerner Days.

Barb said they are ready to jump into the whole western experience. The country-music loving family is ready to dress the part and excited to be outfitted in western garb.

“That’s the fun part,” said Barb, a high school finance secretary. “And the Mounties. That’s going to be awesome seeing them all dressed up in their uniforms.”

The teenagers said they were looking forward to the parade and going to the midway.

The family will take part in the Westerner Days parade and are treated to gate admission and midway passes, gifts from the City of Red Deer, Tourism Red Deer and the Red Deer Chamber of Commerce.

The guests will also enjoy a lunch from Glenn’s Family Restaurant, a night at the Red Deer Lodge, western wear from Jones Boys Saddlery and Western Wear and Westerner Park, a hair cut or style from Tangles Hair Studio, dinner at Earl’s, and a vehicle for a day supplied by Southside Dodge Chrysler Jeep and RV Centre.

crhyno@bprda.wpengine.com