With news of the indoor aquatic centre still buzzing in the air, District of Kent officials are hitting the ground running with the next steps.
During the April 11 meeting of the District of Kent council, officials announced the first two fundraising events to benefit the future aquatic centre. On May 14, there will be a Party in the Park. Details have not yet been released, but the district says it will be an afternoon full of activities, games, food and entertainment. There will be an adult VIP lounge and a movie played in the park as well.
On Aug. 27, there will be a Community Swimathon at the Ferny Coombe Outdoor Pool. All ages are welcome and must be able to swim a minimum of one lap. There will be inflatables for the kids, games, prizes and a pizza party. The District will distribute tax receipts for minimum donations of $20.
On Monday, April 11, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Joyce Murray announced $110 million in funding for 57 infrastructure projects across the province, including $454,000 in federal funding for the District of Kent Aquatic Centre.
This project has been at least 10 years in the making on multiple levels of government. The indoor facility is expected to include a six-lane pool, leisure and whirl pools, a sauna and other amenities. This aquatic centre would take the place of Ferny Coombe Pool.
A total of $13.5 million was dedicated to the project through the federal government’s contribution of $454,000, the province dedicating $9.5 million and $3.6 million coming from municipal, First Nations and other funding streams.
Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon MP Brad Vis said advocating for the area to secure funding for the aquatic centre has been a relentless effort.
“I am focused on securing Ottawa funding for investments needed here at home,” stated Vis. “This is a very exciting project, and I am thrilled it is finally coming to fruition. So many of our communities stand to benefit from this indoor aquatic centre that will serve residents year-round.”
In other Council business:
– The council approved the temporary closure of the parking lot beside the Aberdeen building on April 23 to set up a food station as part of the Let’s Connect Kent celebration. This celebration came about as a way to thank the community members for keeping each other safe during the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.
– Mayor Sylvia Pranger declared June 8 as “World Ocean’s Day, ” as requested by Nature Canada. Nature Canada is one of the country’s oldest national nature conservation charities, composed of a network of more than 1,200 organizations across Canada.