Ponoka businesses were encouraged to join with the town in supporting a pair of initiatives.
At the Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce meeting Nov. 20, Mayor Rick Bonnett focused on getting chamber members and other businesses on board with both the town’s sponsorship of the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer next February and in the fight to get a new fieldhouse.
Bonnett explained the hope is that many local businesses will help showcase Ponoka on Feb. 22 and 23 during a special event at the Games.
“We want to see local businesses, and especially chamber members, showcase themselves and what our community has to offer to all of Canada,” he said.
The mayor also spoke about having the business community behind the town as it pushes the provincial government on funding for a fieldhouse.
“I’ve always said, if we do not get funding from the provincial and federal governments then this is a facility that can’t be done,” Bonnett stated.
“With our new building and the new bridge, without government grants, (the fieldhouse) is not going to happen.”
Bonnett also mentioned that the new town hall site — which includes the Ponoka Jubilee Library and Campus Alberta Central — is open and doing well, but that any post-secondary programming won’t get going until the new year.
The last thing Bonnett touched on was the looming 2019 budget, which he noted will be a tough one for the town.
“Hopefully, the economy will turn the corner and get going again. Obviously, the need for a pipeline is a big thing.”