Athletic park opens to public

The builders of an athletics park at Lacombe are looking forward to further milestones after holding its grand opening last weekend.

The builders of an athletics park at Lacombe are looking forward to further milestones after holding its grand opening last weekend.

The $4.4-million park was officially opened on Saturday in front of hundreds of spectators and athletes.

Organizers also announced that MEGlobal, the title sponsor, had renewed its commitment through to Dec. 31, 2020, bringing its total commitment to $500,000. It had originally committed $250,000.

Rocco Schurink, MEGlobal’s vice-president of operations, said the company looks forward to many years of sport, entertainment and excitement in Lacombe at MEGlobal Athletic Park.

Darren Gagnon, fundraising and marketing chair for the Lacombe Athletic Park Association, said that MEGlobal’s first amount of money was used for capital expenses.

The fieldhouse was built, the turf was installed, and the bleachers and the lights were put in.

The additional donation will become part of the park’s annual operating budget. It’s paid over six years, said Gagnon.

“About six years ago, there was a dream to build a building with some change rooms and then it was a bigger building with change rooms, concession, public washrooms, storage, viewing towers and a media centre,” said Gagnon. “And then we added bleachers and lights.”

The artificial turf was installed this spring.

The final phase is to install a running track, hopefully next year or the year after.

More than half of the project’s money, or about $2.5 million, was gathered through fundraising and corporate sponsorship.

“We’re still fundraising for operations of it,” said Gagnon.

Lacombe County provided $700,000. The association also received provincial and federal grants.

The City of Lacombe provided administrative and planning support, and donated $375,000, plus $100,000 work in kind.

Gagnon said this park is exciting for all of Central Alberta.

Last weekend, the association hosted soccer games including those with the Red Deer College Queens and rugby games involving the Red Deer Titans. The Central Alberta Buccaneers football team relocated there from Red Deer.

The park is located at 5644 56th St., next to École Secondaire Lacombe Composite High School.

Wolf Creek School Division leased the land to the City of Lacombe, and in turn it subleased the land to the parks association.

“We’re operating the facility with about a $150,000 to $175,000 budget a year,” said Gagnon.

ltester@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Red Deer boat launches closed due to rising water levels

More thawing ice and snow means a higher Red Deer River and… Continue reading

Candles, flowers, messages of support at scene of Toronto van attack

TORONTO — Candles, flowers and messages of support are being left this… Continue reading

Sentencing hearing for second-degree murder in woman’s online beating death

WINNIPEG — A sentencing hearing is underway for a teenager who pleaded… Continue reading

Canadian firm linked to Facebook data scandal defends its political work

OTTAWA — The co-founders of a Canadian company at the centre of… Continue reading

G7 ministers probe threats of ‘dark’ internet in wake of daylight van attack

TORONTO — Security ministers from the G7 countries are discussing how to… Continue reading

WATCH: Central Alberta dancers take over Red Deer College with their moves

Danceworks Central Alberta Dance Festival is now in its 38th year

Toronto in mourning day after van attack left 10 dead, 15 injured

TORONTO — Shock gave way to grief in Toronto on Tuesday as… Continue reading

2 approaches to turning recycled materials into art

What have you not seen recycled into an art form? Everything from… Continue reading

How a small P.E.I. police force is using humour to charm the internet

KENSINGTON, P.E.I. — A police force in a tiny Prince Edward Island… Continue reading

Habana, World Cup winner & Springbok record-holder, retiring

Bryan Habana, the lightning-fast South Africa wing and World Cup winner with… Continue reading

Canadians head home after U-17 soccer tournament called off due to violence

Canada coach Bev Priestman was preparing her team for a game Sunday… Continue reading

TV’s ‘Homeland’ feels challenge of competing with real world

WASHINGTON — Members of the cast of TV’s “Homeland” call it “spy… Continue reading

As Osoyoos Indian Band flourishes, so too does Okanagan’s wine tourism

Indigenous practices have driven growth of South Okanagan’s wine history and agricultural influence

Opioid treatment gap in Medicare: methadone clinics

One in three older Americans with Medicare drug coverage is prescribed opioid… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month