Performers from Weyburn and area are set to take the stage in a virtual way at TeleMiracle 45, which begins today (Saturday) and runs through to Sunday, Feb. 28.
Singer Maraya Parisien, who is 11 years old, will be making a return appearance, and will be singing the song "Control" by Zoe Weiss on Sunday, scheduled for 2:40 p.m.
Maraya has been out collecting funds with her grandma to raise money for this year's TeleMiracle. As of Sunday she has collected $1,570, and on air, she challenged Weyburn businesses to meet or beat this donation.
TeleMiracle means a lot to Maraya, as her aunt Danette (predeceased) passed away from spina bifida on Jan. 7, 1989. Danette used funds from TeleMiracle in her day for new wheelchairs or money for transportation to get to appointments.
Maraya went up to Regina last month to prerecord her son as they are not doing a live show due to COVID. Maraya will also be doing a zoom call to present her cheque just before she performs on Sunday.
Other local talent includes dancer Autumn Alexander, singer Alfredo Aguiar, singer Breanna Bjarnason, singer Karissa Hoffart (who just performed a Pink Shirt Day concert virtually on Wednesday for Weyburn students) and singer Onello Bahingawan.
In addition, Brad and Ashley Brown of Sedley are part of the Countdown Show which precedes TeleMiracle, and will be streamed live online and the TeleMiracle YouTube channel.
Alexander is dancing for the third time, her second appearance as a soloist. She previously appeared in 2017 and 2019. She held a fundraiser selling her art online, and as of Monday she had raised about $2,000, which will be matched by Nutrien to make it a $4,000 donation.
She taped a video of her dance performance and it is set to be shown around 1 p.m. on Sunday. “I’m pretty excited to see what the end result of our recording session looks like. It was quite different this year, but it will be cool to see how they mix in all the performances together in the end,” said Alexander.
TeleMiracle 45 will take place at Prairieland Park in Saskatoon without an in-studio audience. The hosts will be on stage live but, for safety reasons, the majority of the musical entertainment and donor presentations will be pre-taped or linked live from other locations.
The pre-show, Countdown to TeleMiracle, will be live-streamed on www.telemiracle.combeginning at 6:15 p.m. Saturday night.
At 9 p.m. the 20-hour television broadcast gets underway on Saskatchewan's CTV stations. The telethon will continue to air around the clock until 5 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 28.
TeleMiracle is organized annually by the Kinsmen, Kinettes and Kin Clubs of Saskatchewan with the proceeds going to the Kinsmen Foundation, which provides specialized mobility and medical equipment to people and organizations throughout the province, as well as travel assistance for residents in need of medical treatment outside their community. Last year's telethon raised $5,523,472.