Camp Alexo to undergo major renovations

It will be all hands on deck this summer at the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Red Deer and District run Camp Alexo.

It will be all hands on deck this summer at the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Red Deer and District run Camp Alexo.

The group will be starting a $1.2-million renovation project that is intended to set up the camp for the next 30 years.

This year, there is a long to-do list that organizers want built in one weekend: two new activity shelters, an enviro wash house (waterless bathroom), two walking bridges, a multi-purpose games court, two new 20-person cabins, replace/expand a storage building, an entry gate and sign, and expand the sunset house.

The work this summer accounts for roughly $400,000 of the total project price tag.

Red Deer Youth and Volunteer Centre fund development director John Johnston says they hope to complete this “camp makeover” for this summer over the June 6 to 8 weekend.

“This is unprecedented, we’ve never done this before,” he said.

Finding skilled volunteers to donate their time to the Weekend Warriors initiative has not been a problem. In fact, they are bracing for as many as 300 workers at the camp. Already, 156 have registered. But they are still looking for skilled tradespeople in carpentry, electrical, plumbing and machine operation who want to help out.

The three days will not be all work and no play. All camping and meals will be provided free of charge, and after a 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. workday, there will be live music and entertainment after supper.

“People can bring their families, there’s no cost, all we’re asking for is a weekend of their time to make a difference,” said Johnston.

Next year, the goal is to tackle big ticket items like the kitchen and dinning hall facilities.

But the initial work needs to be completed first.

Each summer, Camp Alexo is home to 350 to 400 children — approximately 100 at a time — and more throughout the year. In 30 years, the camp has impacted more than 18,500 children.

For those who want to get involved, contact the Red Deer Youth and Volunteer Centre at 403-342-6500 or online at www.bbbsreddeer.ca.

jaldrich@bprda.wpengine.com