Volunteers gather on April 14 for landfill cleanup with all of the proceeds going towards the new skateboard park that will be going in at Flumerfelt Park in Coleman. Southwest Alberta Skateboard Society photo.
Nicholas L. M. Allen
Apr 26, 2023
The Southwest Alberta Skateboard Society received a donation from the Blairmore Lions Club of $10,000.
The Southwest Alberta Skateboard Society (SWASS) is working to bring a new skateboard park to Flumerfelt Park in Coleman.
SWASS member Ian Gauthier said they received a donation from the Blairmore Lions Club of $10,000, allowing them to reach Phase 1 of the skateboard park.
“It was our first major donation from any organization or company, and it really helped get the ball rolling... It wouldn’t have happened without the Blairmore Lions Club. So, a big thank you to them as well,” said Gauthier.
The group has started work with New Line Skateparks to start designing the skateboard park as well as completing the budget for the project.
“Newline is the biggest skate park builder in Canada. They’re currently working on the Fernie skate park and they also did the Sparwood skate park and a couple skate parks in Lethbridge. They have a really good reputation,” added Gauthier.
Gauthier explained how when he came to the Crowsnest Pass there was an indoor skateboard park at the Albert Stella Arena.
“[The skateboard park] was a big part of me moving to the Crowsnest Pass. When it shut down, the skate park was no longer. It was something the community needed, and I wanted to be a part of getting it back up and going,” said Gauthier.
He has been skateboarding for over 20 years, even competing semi-professionally across North America. Gauthier is also one of the owners of the Borderline skate shop in Lethbridge.
“We hope to get more people involved and grow the sport in the Crowsnest Pass,” said Gauthier.
There will be a public meeting on April 26, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Elks Hall in Blairmore. Members from New Line Skateparks will be doing a presentation to start helping the skateboard society with the design process.
“Even if you can’t make the event, there will be a survey choosing different obstacles that you’d like to see in the park. People can still have a say. What we’re trying to do is get the community involved and make this a community project,” said Gauthier.
New Line created an online survey for anyone wanting to be involved in the design process. The online survey will allow people to help choose what kind of obstacles they would like to see in the park. The survey will be active from April 26 to May 12.
After these steps are complete, SWASS will have a proper budget and skatepark renderings. This will allow them to apply for federal and provincial grants, along with asking local businesses for donations.
He also gave thanks to Municipal Council members and the recreation department for helping them to see the project through.
Volunteers also gathered at the landfill on April 15 at 11 a.m. to perform cleanup as a fundraiser for the project with proceeds going to the new skateboard park.
For anyone looking to donate or learn more, you can contact Southwest Alberta Skateboard Society at email@example.com or visit their Facebook and Instagram pages.