Manitoba town faces off over future of indoor skating rink
WINNIPEG BEACH -- An Interlake community is considering what to do with its community centre this winter – with one possibility being no indoor ice rink.
"I was just notified very recently that it's a very good chance we won’t be getting ice again this year or perhaps ever again,” says Jay Adams, the chair of the Winnipeg Beach hockey program.
He said right now 60 kids are enrolled in the hockey program.
“It’s a recreational level of hockey, it's not a competitive level," Adams said, adding the program is perfect to get kids involved with the sport while taking some of the competitive pressure off.
"A lot of folks in the country either don’t have the money or the time to put their kids into full organized hockey because of the travel cost and costs involved," Adams said.
Winnipeg Beach Mayor Tony Pimentel said the community centre may not get ice this year. He said it's not just the overall costs, but also the fact there's a pandemic
"Throughout Manitoba, winter activities are changing," he said. "Schools don’t have the activities they had before."
The mayor said the council wants to hear from the community and no decision has been made. Pimentel said the council has to look at what residents want - and many who would go normally go south for the winter aren’t.
He said with the community centre being expensive to operate, the council is looking for the best value for taxpayers.
Pimentel said the kids do have an outdoor skating rink area or they can go to surrounding communities like Gimli.
Concerned parents have started a petition in support of allowing the kids to skate in the rink.
Winnipeg Beach town council will be meeting Wednesday.