With a new home come new potentials and the Ponoka Air Cadets have both.
The # 65 Ponoka squadron celebrated the grand opening of their new location located at the old Ponoka Elementary School – the pink building – Tuesday, Sept. 8 with much excitement of parents and the cadets themselves.
Commanding officer (CO) Capt. Tracy Fiedler said this new location, which includes the gymnasium and five classrooms, allows the cadets to delve further into their programs, training and sports activities.
“Now we just have more room to get cadets,” added Fiedler.
Among the many programs offered at the squadron are flight simulators, speech taking, sports and hosting area conferences. Fiedler said the gym will be host to an area cadet conference for commanding officers in the near future.
Another area of excitement this season is the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Canadian Air Cadets. Ponoka squadron was created the first year the cadets were founded and joined the national organization in 1941. Fiedler said the squadron’s main parade will be held in June, 2016 with all alumni being invited.
Stan Monkman, the director of public relations for the provincial committee of the Air Cadet League of Canada, said Ponoka had a special place in his heart. “What a change. I was the CO way back then,” stated Monkman proudly.
He led the squadron for five years starting around 1997 and he feels this new space will bring positive opportunities for the Ponoka team. “There’s a lot more room for a lot more cadets,” he said. “I wish them every success in this new building.”