Gymnastics club closer to putting the pieces together

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Annette Fenske and Lavern Hooper with the shed the Ponoka Gymnastics and Trampoline Club is raffling. The draw is on Sept. 16.

Annette Fenske and Lavern Hooper with the shed the Ponoka Gymnastics and Trampoline Club is raffling. The draw is on Sept. 16.

By Jeffrey Heyden-Kaye

The Ponoka Gymnastics and Trampoline Club has big plans for the community once it gets a new building unpacked and firmly in the ground.

The club recently made use of $200,000 donation from Duncan Scott Grant Sr. to purchase a building. The club has been fundraising for five years to help secure land and operational funding.

“The county has graciously donated the land, and now they just need to know how we will keep it running,” said Annette Feske, club treasure for 18 years.

Ponoka County CAO Charlie Cutforth explained the county donated four acres at 39th Avenue, west of 67th street to the club and $100,000 to the completion of the project, making use of the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) grant. Cutforth said this grant has been used in Rimbey, and toward the planned Ponoka splash park, now in the fundraising stage.

 Fenske said the club wants to have the building available to other groups needing a space to meet. “Girl Guides are looking for a place to go to. It’s not just for us, we want to set up a fitness program for the seniors.”

As part of a school project at Red Deer College, Fenske’s son, James, 21, built the garden shed being raffled off. “We paid for the supplies, he built it, and he is particular, “ Fenske said. The shed can be seen at the Servus Credit Union parking lot on Highway 2A to give people a chance to see the quality and size.

The club practices weekly at Diamond Willow Middle School, but has also applied to the town to use the Kinsmen Community Centre. Components for the 140 foot x 70 foot building made by the Ferro Building Systems were delivered on Sept. 12 and will be constructed by Avion Erectors from Leduc. The company has put these buildings together for 17 years and can erect it in any type of weather.

Nola Thompson, a coach or the club, said the $240,839 building is paid for and they have applied to the Community Spirit Program grant, which would match up to $25,000 in donations from the previous fiscal year.

Tickets are still available for the shed for $5 and the final draw will be at 2 p.m. on Sept 16.