Members of the Ponoka and Gymnastics Trampoline Club had a big shock after seeing thousands of dollars of damage to their new building.
Police say overnight of Saturday, March 28 culprits broke into the building and caused approximately $30,000 to $40,000 worth of damage. Vandals smashed light bulbs, causing glass to be strewn across the building floor, they smashed the drywall, threw paint over parts of the floor and three items into the trampoline pit.
Among the vandalism was graffiti spray-painted on different walls, some with vulgar language and others with a swastika and a statement of “white power” spray-painted on the wall.
Club president Barry Groves said he was shocked by the language. “(It’s) just a big shock to how this is going to affect our kids and community.”
The building was nearing completion, explains Groves, but the club can’t do any cleaning up until it is cleared by their insurance company. The delay not only affects the club, but als the contractors who have been working on the building. Clean up and repairs must occur before the construction work can resume.
“This is a September move in for us,” stated Groves of the delay.
He is grateful to the community support for reaching out to offer assistance and says they will endeavour to complete the project. “It’s not going to stop us for sure.”
Police are also investigating a similar occurrence on a Wolf Creek Public School’s bus during the same time period. A school bus is reported to have been spray-painted with a swastika and the same “white power” phrase. Police say both matters are under investigation.