North Red Deer possibilities discussed

The Normandeau School property felt like a carnival Sunday as residents from the northwest part of the city gathered for some family fun.

Sam Vesely

Sam Vesely

The Normandeau School property felt like a carnival Sunday as residents from the northwest part of the city gathered for some family fun.

There were hotdogs and popcorn, a bounce house, stilt walkers and mascots wandering around.

But the event was more than just fun and games.

The city wanted to know was resident’s ideal community park and community centre would look like.

Pauline Mousseau, community and program facilitator with the City of Red Deer, said the event was about connecting with the community and finding out their thoughts on revitalizing the community center beside Normandeau School.

She said there is only one community center to serve the whole northwest side of Red Deer. The city is looking at building a new facility in the next few years. To do so, Mousseau said the city needs to find out what the community wants in the area.

Gillian Kingston, Aspen Heights/Normandeau Community Enhancement Association president, said the current community centrehas some problems — it’s not big enough and it’s low in the ground.

Kingston said she would like to see something that would be big enough for everyone to use, that had some rental possibilities when it’s not in use and something that could be used for community programming. “I think the possibilities are endless,” she said.

Kingston said it’s important to have a day like Sunday because it gets the community involved and engaged in what is going on.

“The city really wants their input. We really want their input, so that whatever is built they have spoken up and said ‘This is what we want’, so it is exactly that,” Kingston said.

Scott Lohner was at the event with his children Adam, 5, and Rebecca, 8. As he filled out a city questionnaire, his children drew colourful pictures, with Rebecca drawing the family’s home and Adam drawing a long-legged blue cow.

Lohner said it’s important for community members to know one another because it’s safer for the children. “If you’re in a community where no one knows one another you don’t want to send the kids out to play.”

Lohner thought the event was a neat idea. “The games and food are good for the kids. It gets them out of the house.”

sobrien@bprda.wpengine.com