Home » Lace Em’ Up Campaign Kicks Off to Raise Funds for New Rec Centre

Lace Em’ Up Campaign Kicks Off to Raise Funds for New Rec Centre

by Shanine Sealey

The hard work and dedication of countless community members is finally paying off as plans to begin construction of Martensville’s new regional recreation centre is scheduled to begin in early 2023, with a targeted completion date of fall of 2024.

On Wednesday, December 7th, the Martensville Community Recreation Project (MCRP), along with the City of Martensville hosted an event to officially kick off the new Lace ‘Em Up Campaign, which was created to help raise a total of $4.4 million to complete the MCRP’s fundraising goal through contributions from the community. All funds raised through this campaign will go towards offsetting the City of Martensville’s $11.8 million share of the cost for the $44.5 million recreation centre.

Last month, an announcement was made stating that the Federal Government would be contributing $17.8 million towards the project, and the provincial government would invest $14.8 million, with funding coming from the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.

With Martensville seeing significant growth throughout the years, the impact was felt within the walls of the current Martensville Sports Centre and hockey teams were forced to look to other communities to book ice time for practices and tournaments, thus the need for an additional ice surface.

At the December 7th event, Jesse Reis, of the MCRP recalled Martensville Mayor Kent Muench’s speech during the Martensville Minor Hockey Association’s AGM in 2014 about the need for an additional ice surface in the community, and within weeks, a group of volunteers came together to form the MCRP, with a goal of making a second ice surface a reality.

Reis noted that as research progressed and feedback was received, the MCRP quickly realized that their vision wasn’t big enough for what the community needed as other recreation programs were experiencing the same struggles, therefore the vision was modified to include other programs such as soccer, lacrosse, football, baseball, softball and more. “As the dreams of the MCRP expanded, so did our fundraising efforts,” Reis said.

Since inception, the group has hosted a number of annual events to raise funds, as well as a Community House Build in 2021, which brought together local builders and suppliers to construct an 1800 square foot home with proceeds going towards the new rec facility.

“There is still much more work to be done, and we are still so passionate about seeing this project cross the finish line. We are excited to build our dreams and leave a legacy for generations to come,” Reis added.

At the Lace ‘Em Up Campaign launch, Martensville Mayor Kent Muench spoke about the efforts of the MCRP and the events that have taken place throughout the years to help raise over $1 million towards the project.

“Those events were all dreamt up because of this facility, but they exist now on their own. They improve the quality of life in our community and are a testament to the people who are involved,” Muench said.

Mayor Muench also added that the new facility will attract major sporting and other events that will positively impact the community, as well as provide an estimated 140 jobs directly associated with the construction of the centre, and up to 70 workers on site during construction. “Once the centre is operational, the community will benefit year-round from the economic expenditures associated with it.”

Muench believes the new centre would not have been possible without the volunteers behind the MCRP. “The MCRP and all of their supporters have truly demonstrated what a small group can achieve,” said Muench. “Without their vision and commitment to this project, we would not be here today, and they deserve huge recognition for what they have accomplished.”

Ahlana Ehalt, MCRP Lace ‘Em Up Campaign Co-Chair, spoke about how she knew that through their efforts and dedication, the day would arrive that they could finally celebrate the hard work paid off. “On the day I joined the MCRP, I knew this day would come. When we could stand as a community and celebrate what we did, because we did this together. It is a community that has made this possible. Let’s finish this dream that we have been building together.”

The new facility will be located on the west side of the Highway 12 overpass on land that will be included in a new 680 acre residential/commercial development – Trilogy Ranch. The land for the development, valued at approximately $3 million, was donated by Canwest and North Prairie Developments in 2020.

Once complete, the 145,000 square foot facility will not only include an additional ice surface, with room to expand to two additional ice surfaces in the future, but also an indoor soccer pitch, a rock-climbing wall, pitching and batting opportunities, multi-purpose spaces, cultural space, dressing rooms, practice ice, spectator seating, concession, and more.

Staff and students from Venture Heights School were in attendance to present the first donation to the Lace ‘Em Up Campaign with a cheque for $500, raised through a bake sale; however, that is just the beginning. Local residents and business owners are being asked to consider contributing to this facility, which not only benefits Martensville, but the surrounding communities as well. Donations of as little as $17 a month over a term of five years, equaling approximately $1000, can earn you a permanent spot on the donor wall within the new rec facility.

Although representatives from the federal and provincial governments could not be in attendance, they provided messages to be shared during the event.

Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities, shared, “Recreational infrastructure helps to create dynamic and inclusive communities. By investing in the Martensville Community Recreation Centre, we are supporting the creation of a new space for the community to gather, stay healthy and active.”

Hon. Don McMorris, Saskatchewan’s Minister of Government Relations also provided a note to the community, stating, “The provincial government is proud to invest more than $14.8 million toward this City of Martensville infrastructure project. Once completed, this facility will provide more recreation opportunities for area residents and visitors alike, help position the community for growth, and strengthen Saskatchewan for this new decade and beyond.”

The December 7th event also included the most recent facility renderings and information on the plan to recognize donors. Naming rights will be available for facility amenities such as the rock-climbing wall, interior doorways, the Zamboni and more.

Information on how you can contribute to the Lace ‘Em Up Campaign will be available on the MCRP website www.mcrp.ca/donate or dropped off at City Hall, and donations received by December 31, 2022 may qualify for a charitable tax receipt.

For more information on the details of the new facility, including project costs and the next steps in the planning process, visit Martensville.ca.

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