The town of Wilkie has started fundraising efforts towards replacing an aging swimming pool, but things are a little slow going due to some complications from outside forces. Although the restrictions in Saskatchewan allow for events depending on some factors, the town has cancelled and rescheduled a number of events due to safety/simplicity concerns a few times during the course of the winter.
Recreation Director Lori Fenrich is in the midst of planning some events down the road to try spur things ahead, but once they can get their events running, she expects that things will pick up. The pool itself is still in usable condition, so people in Wilkie won't be without their 'beat the heat' spot this summer if things aren't fundraised in time and the plan it going to take some time.
"So the new pool looks a ballpark figure at the moment over the $2,000,000 mark, and so we have basically about a drop in the pot. We have approximately I'm going to say $115,000 currently fundraised and set aside for it. I am looking into some grant opportunities at the moment and hoping we can maybe achieve some funds through that and that would be a fantastic thing. There is a current government grant going on that it closes towards the end of May that I will be applying for."
While government grants are going to help out a lot with the fundraising efforts, they are not a guarantee at the moment and they are still going to need support from the community whether they are approved for those grants or not. With some events already having to be postponed such as a Brad Johner concert that's now been pushed back to this summer, the town was hoping to be a little further ahead than they are at this point.
"We did stuff before Christmas, we ran a few little activities and such for kids and we also did a contest regarding the Christmas decorations with the commercial businesses as well as residential. Those finished up just before Christmas and then we just held as much public skating and shinny as we could over the Christmas and New Year's break so that families could enjoy that together, and a lot of people participated and came out and attended those."
Now that the provincial government seems intent on getting rid of restrictions in the province, events in the town of Wilkie will likely start their comeback in 2022 with things like Jump Into Summer and Farmer's Days making a return. That said, if there's people out there that want to help the pool along the way, they are open to direct donations as well.
"They can stop in at the town office located at 206 2nd Ave West in Wilkie, or they can give me a call at the town and we can make arrangements and they would receive a tax deductible receipt for any donation that they put forward towards the pool."