Tile project leaves a legacy

The beautiful and varied tiles will be left up permanently, allowing locals a chance to leave their mark on this community in a special way.

The community-made tiles were installed recently at the CRCC.

The Community Recreation & Cultural Centre (CRCC) has been open nearly a year now and has more than met expectations for usage since reopening.

The 14,000 sq. ft. addition opened in October, 2014 and has been well-used since then. Monthly usage reports are consistently up. For example, the August 2015 statistics report registered program revenue is up 56 per cent year to year, tickets / passes sales are up 23 per cent and drop in sales are up 17 per cent. Overall, the total facility usage is up 33.5 per cent comparing 2014 to 2015.

Of course, the expansion came at a price of $2,500,000. As part of fundraising efforts, a tile project was begun for locals to help fill the coffers of the CRCC pot and leave an imprint on the new building at the same time.

The first batch of tiles were installed recently at the CRCC. The beautiful and varied tiles will be left up permanently, allowing locals a chance to leave their mark on this community in a special way.

When the first tile workshop was offered last year, Sheila Robertson was one of the residents who decided to take part. Robertson painted a tile to represent the major events that have shaped her life. There’s a barn to illustrate being born and raised on a dairy farm. She painted symbols to represent her long career in the Royal Canadian Air Force as well as her time spent abroad in walking groups. Lastly, there is a telephone to represent the ‘friendly phone program’. That is a program Robertson has spearheaded since its inception back in 1997. She and two volunteers spend time each week phoning locals in need of a visit.

The tile, she explains, “is sort of my life.”

Sylvia and Ted Fecho also painted a tile. They opted for painting one to represent some of the things they enjoy doing in the area like canoeing and biking. They liked the idea of leaving an imprint, and they spend a lot of time at the CRCC. They love the CRCC and praise the staff for their knowledge and friendliness.

“It certainly helps support the rec complex,” says Ted Fecho. “But at the same time, it leaves a bit of a legacy as well.”

The Fechos say it was a fun thing to do and urge others to participate – “as long as you don’t take it too seriously” to design and paint the perfect tile, says Ted Fecho.

The CRCC is offering another tile workshop Oct. 3. The Community Tile project is an opportunity to paint a ceramic tile to represent your family, your business or your interests. The tiles are kiln-fired and will be installed on the same wall as the first batch of tiles. Recreation supervisor Kimberley Goulet says they hope to fill the wall with tiles. Funds from the Community Tile Project will continue to support the CRCC expansion costs.

Staff from Prism Studio in Chilliwack will be on-hand to guide the project. A 6×6 tile is $50. A 12×12 tile is $90. The workshop takes place Saturday, Oct. 3 from 10-2 p.m. Pre-registration is required; for registration information, call 604-796-8891.