Claresholm Lions Club contributes $5,000 to Agriplex expansion

pride of lions - The Claresholm Lions Club recently provided a $5,000 donation to the Willow Creek Agricultural Society to go towards completion of their new indoor riding arena. Here from left are Lyal O'Neill, president of the Lions; Gerry McGuire, representing the ag society bu also a Lion; and Lion Ben Penner. Photo by Rob Vogt

About $500,00 needed to get building up and running

By Rob Vogt, Local Press Writer

The Claresholm Lions Club has showed its support for the new building at the Claresholm Agriplex by providing a $5,000 contribution.

The cheque was presented at the Lions’ meeting on June 27, after Lion Gerry McGuire, who also sits on the board of the Willow Creek agricultural Society, made a presentation.

He explained the ag society started talking about a new building in 2013-2014.

They have raised a substantial portion of the money themselves and have shown their commitment to the community by hiring local contractors.

A total of $1.7 million has been invested so far, including some matching government grants.

McGuire said the project is three-quarters of the way to the point the new building can be used, and the ag society is working to get to that point.

One Lion asked what the biggest hurdle to completion is.

McGuire said about $500,000 is needed to get the building operational.

The front part, which includes office, a kitchen area and more is in the front and can be completed as funds become available.

Overall, McGuire said $1 million is needed to finish the building completely, and $500,000 to get it up and running, but with no front.

Ideally, the ag society would like to be open by October, but don’t know if they will make that timeline.

McGuire stressed there is a demand for this building.

“We’re constantly being bombarded with requests,” he said. “We just don’t have the facilities.”

That will change with the addition of a new building.

He noted not only is cash welcome, but also labour and work in kind.

Anyone who does make a donation can send it to David Hansma, manager of the Claresholm Agriplex, who will issue a tax receipt on behalf of the ag society.