Plans for outdoor rink in High Prairie continue

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

Efforts to construct an outdoor skating rink in High Prairie ready for next winter continue.

However, a second group has surfaced called the Outdoor Arena Committee expressing interest in addition to Marigold Enterprises, council heard at its March 14 meeting.

Marigold first expressed interest at council’s Feb. 3 meeting to construct a rink at its empty lot east of its office. However, Recreation Supt. Ramona Rollins wrote in a report to council that a second group has come forward. As a result, a joint meeting was held March 7 to gather information and explore the possibility of the two groups working together.

Rollins attend the March 14 meeting and said the two groups are interested in working together. They did express interest in using the old boards from the Sports Palace that are being replaced this summer.

Mayor Brian Panasiuk noted after Rollins’ report there was no need for an immediate decision as talks were preliminary.

Council also heard it was the plan the new rink would not be maintained by the rec board.

“It will be a community-led initiative,” said Town of High Prairie CAO Bill McKennan.

Marigold has plans to build a mini-golf course on site in summer. In winter, the sand will be frozen and flooded to make ice.

“The plan is that they will eventually be able to add a concert pad to the build,” wrote Rollins.

“For containment of balls and pucks, golf ball sized netting will be in place around the rink.”

Marigold has received a grant to develop the site.

“With the grant, we were able to purchase picnic tables, fire pits, lighting, and fencing,” wrote Marigold’s support administrator, Brogan Severson, to council on Feb. 3.

“The proposed outdoor skating rink (24 x 72 feet) would be free to use and open to everyone during regular business hours.”

The removal of the boards in the Sports Palace would be done with volunteers. Rollins wrote the contractor is more than happy to work with volunteers on the project. The volunteer group would be responsible for moving, storing and rebuilding the boards at the Marigold location.

Marigold is covering all costs including insurance.

“The only ask that the group has from the Town is for the flood water to be supplied at no charge by way of the fire hydrant adjacent to the site,” wrote Rollins.

“The outdoor rink and the mini golf course will be free for everybody to use with occasional charges for birthday parties if anyone is to book one,” she adds.

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