REGINA -- When you walk into Gale Tytlandsvik's house, you're greeted with colour.

From the bright yellow walls in her living room to her kitchen table with a sun painted on it, it’s not hard to tell this Estevan resident adores all things bright and joyful.

"We don't have enough beauty in our world and we focus on the negative," Tytlandsvik said. "If I can build something or create something that makes people smile, why not."

Tytlandsvik moved to Estevan 25 years ago but she was born in Florida. She said when she moved, adding colour into her home and wardrobe was a way to make her feel more at home.

"Winters are long in gray and I started really appreciating colour, during the long gray winters," she said.

Tytlandsvik recently retired as a real estate agent. But even when she was working full-time, Tytlandsvik felt Estevan could use some more colour too.

Tytlandsvik and her friend, Leslie Padwick, joined the City of Estevan's beautification committee. They wanted to add more life to the community with murals on city buildings. Tytlandsvik painted one of the murals.

"We travelled around a little bit to check out other towns and we actually went to one that had a little garden. And we said, 'hmm, we could do that too,'" she said.

Tytlandsvik and Padwick found an empty plot of land along 4 Avenue between the Salvation Army and the SaskTel office. The pair convinced both SaskTel and Salvation Army to loan them the land and they would build a garden on it.

"I just really want to encourage people to stop and visit and talk to people," Tytlandsvik said. "There's a lot of lonely people out there right now and the garden, I feel gives a place for people to come and visit and relax and, and just maybe, you know, take a deep breath, start over again."

The garden is currently under construction this year because of a renovation SaskTel is doing to its building. But the garden will be back next summer.

Tytlandsvik has also designed sculptures in the community near the Estevan Comprehensive School. The sculpture features students playing instruments in the school's band programs.

Brenda Blackburn is friends with Tytlandsvik and nominated her to be CTV Regina’s Hometown Hero. She feels Tytlandsvik has been good for the community and has brought a lot of joy to people.


"There's that saying, if there's a will there's a way," Blackburn said. "Gail is the will and she will find the way to make things better for our community and she has she has done things to beautify our city."