Rotary presents first $100,000 for adventure park

Prince Albert Mayor Greg Dionne, flanked by rotarians John Morash and Keith Fonstad, accepts the first $100,000 instalment for the new Rotary Adventure Park on Thursday.

Funds raised through Lobsterfest, wine premier

The Rotary Adventure Park is one step closer to reality.

The Rotary Club presented a contribution of $100,000 to Prince Albert Mayor Greg Dionne Thursday as part of its first contribution towards the park. The club is working with the city to bring the adventure park to Little Red River Park. Design and development is ongoing, with construction set to start in the spring of 2022.

Rotary has committed over $500,000 to the project, which is budgeted at over $800,000. The city will provide the remainder of the funding.

The adventure park will be focused on youth 8-14, offering a higher level of intensity and challenge than most other playgrounds in the city.

It’s being planned and built as the club’s centennial project.

“There is a play structure — a tower, swings, parkour-style fitness area and adult fitness area as well as an embankment slide,” said club president Keith Fonstad.

He added that the club wants to create a “full family adventure” and is adding a picnic shelter, refurbishing another, and installing walking trails and benches.

That’s phase one. Phase two will look at the east side of the Little Red River, near the sliding hill.

The club raised its initial contribution through major events, such as Lobsterfest and the Wine Premier, over the last two and a half years.

“Our commitment was to provide some funding directly from the club and fundraise the rest of it,” Fonstad said.

“It’s fantastic to be at this point, between providing the cheque today and working with our vendor on our supplies to get that construction started. It’s really nice to see the project at this point.”

He’s not the only one who’s excited.

“We have such a variety of playgrounds and equipment, this will be (for kids) a little older. Kids are getting excited,” Dionne said.

He said he didn’t quite know if all the elements are quite his cup of tea, “but I may have to try it and I might feel what the fun of it is,” he joked.

He’s explored new playgrounds before – heading down the slide and playing with the sand digging backhoe at Kinsmen Park a few years ago — and will likely get a kick out of the adventure park too.

“One of our jewels in the city is little red. (Rotary is) going to make it a destination place in Prince Albert,” Dionne said.

“It’s the excitement of making that park a better place. It’s for the kids. It gives kids a place to go.”