Locals will immediately recognize our name as Regina’s unofficial nickname. It is an anglicization of the original Cree name for our city, oskana ka-asastēki, (often shortened to Wascana or Oskana). The name was changed to Regina, after Edgar Dewdney, who “just so happened” to own land in the area, declared it to be the Territorial capital and made himself rich in the process. The Cree name was dropped in favour of “Regina” in honour of Queen Victoria, but Pile O’ Bones, Wascana, and Oskana all carry on in extensive use throughout the area.
For instance, Regina’s crown jewel and the 4th largest park in North America bears the name Wascana Park. Wascana Park is also home to the First Nations University of Canada which is located on one of Regina’s few urban reserves. There is both a Federal riding known as Wascana, currently occupied by Minister of Public Safety, Ralph Goodale and a provincial constituency known as Regina Wascana Plains. The City’s downtown core features a monument by legendary artist and Order of Canada recipient, Joe Fafard which is named oskana ka-asastēki, and the Provincial Youth Aboriginal Hockey Championships are known as the Oskana Cup. Many other groups adopt the anglicized version Pile O’ Bones, including the local Derby Club, the Pile O’ Bones Tattoo Convention, the Pile O’ Bones Rodeo, the local BBQ competition and even the local Toast Masters club. The Office of the Treaty Commissioner has recommended the teaching of the original Indigenous place names in our education curriculum and explicitly included Wascana in its list of names to be taught to our youth. Meanwhile local Cree language advocates have called for the City to return to the original name, oskana ka-asastēki.
So we chose Pile O’ Bones Brewing Company to remind people of the fact that Cree, Saulteaux, Nakota, Lakota, Dakota and Métis people called the plains of Saskatchewan home and hunted Buffalo for thousands of years before Dewdney showed up.
Our logo is the Plains Bison, which literally supported thousands of years of life on the Prairie. It is also reflective of our devotion and commitment to our local community.
We are craft beer drinkers and award-winning home brewers. We know you only get out of a beer what you put into it. That’s why we’re committed to using the best quality ingredients we can get our hands on and treating them with respect. Whether it’s malt and other grains, water, yeast or hops; we pay attention to every detail to ensure we’re producing a quality craft beer for you.
Josh is one of the founders of the Pile O’ Bones Brewing Company Ltd.
Prior to launching our little brewery, he served three years as the President of the Ale & Lager Enthusiasts of Saskatchewan alongside a top-notch executive team – which over the years has included the other founders of Pile O' Bones. During his home brewing career, Josh won many medals – though he counts the Pile O' Bones Red Ale as his favourite beer never to win a medal! He also holds the rank of “Certified” within the Beer Judge Certification Program.
Josh serves on the board of Pile O' Bones, where he provides creative input, leadership and strategic and business advice to the company. He named our company Pile O’ Bones because he felt it was important to recognize the unique history of our town and the indigenous perspective of its history. As Josh explains, ”We could have named our brewery the ‘Queen City Brewing Company’ and everyone would know we were local, but that would ignore thousands of years of history, and sometimes not so proud history, of our City.”
By day, Josh advocates for Indigenous governments across Western Canada. As a Métis and proud graduate of Gabriel Dumont College, he believes in giving back to his community – a principle that is baked into
the DNA of the Pile O’ Bones Brewing Company.
While travelling in the U.K., Brent was enamoured by the amount of colours and tastes that craft producers across the Atlantic were able to brew. Upon his return to Regina – which at the time was not the home to the vibrant craft beer scene it is today – he was unable to find the types of beer he now craved. Brent decided to join the Ale & Lager Enthusiasts of Saskatchewan to learn how to produce the beer himself. He immediately took the opportunity to volunteer time to the club, and served on the executive alongside Glenn and Josh. While a member of the ALES club Brent completed the BJCP training program and achieved the rank of “Certified”.
By trade, Brent is a Cyber Security professional in Regina. Brent serves on the board at Pile O’ Bones and is also the companies Operations Manager. This role makes him responsible for ordering raw materials, ensuring production of beer is on time, quality is maintained, and ensuring the delicious final product gets to our customers on time and in perfect condition.
Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Brent eventually found a home in Regina where he currently resides. Brent is an avid board gamer and loves to cook in his spare time. He can usually be found around a game table with friends and a cold pint. Other interests include green energy innovations, cyber security technology, IoT, hunting, and fishing.
Like so many others in Regina’s craft beer scene, Regina native Nathan began his brewing career as a home brewer. Always looking to learn new things and improve, Nathan joined Canada’s oldest (and best) home brewing club, the Ale & Lager Enthusiasts of Saskatchewan. It was here where he won a few home brewing awards, met Glenn, Brent, and
Josh, and was put on his path to becoming a professional brewer.
As Head Brewer, Nathan is engaged in continuous learning to perfect his craft that he may bring you an exciting and quality product. While he may be a man of few words, he is always excited to talk about craft beer and brewing.
When Nathan isn’t crafting delicious beer you’ll find him drinking delicious craft beer in his garden, smoking meat, fermenting random things, or fishing.