There’s nothing like grabbing your pals and going off skating at the nearest pond you can find after school.
One Lacombe resident has made that possible for his neighbourhood children.
Brent Law, who lives near the pond on Elizabeth Park Boulevard, walks his dog in the area and cares for children in the community.
“Now kids stay in so much because there’s nothing to do outside. I see a pond, I see a place to play,” he said Wednesday.
He cleared off the pond and turned it into a play area for both older and younger children in his neighbourhood.
“I made sure I had more than six inches of ice and went out and started clearing snow for them. So I took the snow blower out, cleared out the track and skating rink, and then a smaller area for little kids, so they’re not right in midst of hockey players,” he said.
This is the second year Law decided to clear the snow since moving to a house closer to the pond in July 2017. He moved to Lacombe in 2012 from Pierceland, Sask., and is a handyman by trade.
“As soon as I saw the pond was being used by kids scraping it off by themselves, I thought ‘you know what? I will buy a snow blower and take care of this for them,’” he said, referring to clearing the snow last year.
This year, he added lights to the pond in case children decided they wanted to play in the evenings. The lights were donated by a local lumber yard, where the handyman often shops for supplies.
Every now and then, the Good Samaritan goes out and clears the snow wherever he sees it on his daily walks. He also sees children playing and having fun on the pond from his garage.
“I can’t see the pond from my windows. I have to go into the garage, but I look every day after school and it’s always full of kids out there,” said Law, who is also a parent himself, to his grown up children.
So far, he has dedicated more than 25 hours to taking care of the pond, but he wants to do more, such as adding more lights to the pond, once he sees them on sale.
He said the City of Lacombe takes care of some areas, like Cranna Lake, but not the pond that he cleared.
The Lacombe man believes Christmas is a time to give back to the community and he is often involved in fundraisers at this time of the year. A couple of years ago, Law and his wife built cat towers and castles for indoor cats and auctioned them off on Facebook and donated the money to the food bank in Lacombe.
This year, he’s involved in another fundraiser with a group called Samaritans of Red Deer.