Plans for a new day lodge at Beatton Provincial Park received a $61,000 boost from Co-Op on Saturday.
Officials with the Fort St. John Co-Op gathered at the park with the Whiskey Jack Nordic Ski Club to announce the funding, which will help build a social hub and resting place for skiers, snowshoers, and local school and community groups.
"I can't tell you how important it is and how grateful we are to be getting such support from our local community for this project," said ski club president Eliza Stanford.
"The benefits are going to be huge for not only the ski community, but the community at large as we make this day lodge available to anybody who wants to use it. This park is truly a four-season park, and we have a lot of visitors."
The ski club announced plans for the 1,500-square-foot lodge in 2018, and plans to break ground in 2020 with the lodge ready for next winter.
The lodge is being designed and built with the environment in mind, taking advantage of natural light and using LED interior lights for minimal electrical consumption.
The funding comes through Co-Op's Community Spaces program, which is providing $2 million to 27 organizations across western Canada this year.
"In our community, we have hardworking groups that make a difference in people's lives and that's why the Co-Op is giving back,” said Brad Lussier, General Manager of Fort St. John Co-op.
“We are a business that cares about people, and we care about our community, and so do our owners. We work to make a better life in western Canada improving communities wherever we work, live, and play."
Since 2015, the Community Spaces program has donated $8.5 million to 115 projects.
"We thought about what we could accomplish as we work together. We created a program that allows us to fund large capital projects which may not be able to be supported alone," Lussier said.
"As western Canadians, we make the most of every chance we get to go outside and enjoy the parks, playgrounds, community gardens, and other spaces that bring us together."
Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at email@example.com.