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Herb McFaull and Anthony Bidulka

Herb McFaull and Anthony Bidulka are well-known community champions. They’ve been together more than 25 years and have enjoyed successful careers — McFaull as a financial planner and Bidulka as CPA and author. They have made a practice of supporting worthy causes, including Remai Modern.

It was precedent setting when McFaull and Bidulka were awarded the prestigious CTV Saskatoon Citizen of the Year Award in 2014 “for their combined efforts to make Saskatoon a better place.” The award reflects their commitment and vision on many fronts.

They are justifiably proud of introducing Camp fYrefly to Saskatchewan, nearly a decade ago. This leadership movement builds self-esteem among gender and sexually diverse youth. The couple has also worked on behalf of Persephone Theatre, the Saskatchewan Writers Guild, The Word on the Street, and the Royal University Hospital Foundation.

As chair of Remai Modern’s fundraising cabinet, McFaull has toured many prospective donors through the new museum, sharing his excitement at its potential to transform this community.

McFaull and Bidulka have donated a total of $55,000 to Remai Modern, and have purchased two named seats in the gallery’s 150-seat theatre.

“It’s a fabulous museum,” says McFaull, “and it is also ‘Saskatoon smart.’ This amazing multipurpose facility has spaces that can be used in diverse ways and rented to generate revenue.”

They note the expansive gallery spaces, river views and state-of-the-art theatre, and the huge, main-floor learning centre, where 1,000 youngsters a month will enjoy programs.

“We expect 90,000 kids a year from across the province will participate in Remai Modern in-house and outreach programs,” McFaull says. “The outreach efforts build on what the Mendel has done, and now we can do so much more.”

“As a writer,” Bidulka says, “ I think it is really important to have this community gathering place for art, cultural events and entertainment. Remai Modern will bring people together, and Canada and the world will come to our doorstep.

“River Landing gets 300,000 pedestrians a year, and the museum will have so much to offer them, including free exhibitions on the main floor.”

Adds McFaull, “Remai Modern will be a great asset for decades to come and, according to the 2015 report from the Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority, it will contribute $17 million to the local economy in its first two years.”

Remai Modern is “a great deal for the city,” McFaull emphasizes. “For $29 million, city taxpayers are getting an $84-million gallery and multi-purpose facility — the perfect fit for Saskatoon.”