Branden Macnaughton, Lane Ogden, Kourtney Holberton, and Kally Campbell skate along Sparwood’s skating trail. (Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press)

Branden Macnaughton, Lane Ogden, Kourtney Holberton, and Kally Campbell skate along Sparwood’s skating trail. (Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press)

Sparwood’s outdoor skating trail to return

The trail’s future is set in concrete, after the district was awarded a grant from the CBT

The Sparwood outdoor skating trail will be making a comeback in future winter seasons, with the future of the trail to be set in concrete – literally.

The District of Sparwood has secured itself a cool $62,447 from the Columbia Basin Trust’s Trail Enhancement Grant to pave a circuit through Lions Park for the skating trail.

The trail was piloted in the 2020-2021 winter as a tentative idea to create more outdoor amenities for locals, with district staff driving a zamboni through the existing path in Lions Park to create a perfect ice trail.

Mayor David Wilks said the grant was a big win for the district, and for the experiment that went right.

“I think the community will be very happy with this. It was very well used not only by people in Sparwood but throughout the valley,” he said.

“In that first year we just wanted to see what the uptake would be, and it was extremely well used. It seemed to be a bit of a no-brainer if the opportunity came about to expand it.”

With the $62,447, the district will set about paving a 600m circuit in the park in coming months with hopes it will be ready for winter.

By paving the trail, Wilks said that it would be easier for district staff to prepare the trail come winter, as the zamboni used (from the Rec Centre) would have an easier time navigating a solid surface rather than a frozen dirt path.

There are also tentative plans to improve infrastructure around the circuit to include lighting, so locals can use the trail more during the darker months of the year.

Another $20k in operational funds have been earmarked by the district for the project with $10k as a contingency.

READ MORE: Sparwood’s outdoor skate trail proves a hit



scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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