By Nikki Jamieson
Westwind Weekly News
A local agribusiness is helping to give the upcoming pool season a big splash in Magrath.
Richardson Pioneer has donated $50,000 for Magrath’s new community pool.
“That is great for the town of Magrath. A donation of that size and magnitude really makes a difference in the swimming pool project,” said Magrath Mayor Russ Barnett. “It’s a game-changer for us.”
“Richardson felt this was a meaningful and important initiative to contribute to and were pleased to donate $50,000 in support of the project. We recognize these meeting spaces play a vital role in overall community well-being. These spaces also facilitate quality interactions and provide increased opportunities for residents to come together,” said Kelcey Vossen, communications and public relations for Richardson International.
Richardson has more than 3,000 employees across Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, and believes in giving back to the places their employees and customers call home. Every year they commit to supporting initiatives that help benefit the communities they’re in, particularly in the areas of visual and performing arts, education, youth initiatives and environment and sustainability.
“Richardson understood this project to be of particular importance to the community. The recreational facility supports summertime aquatic recreation for the residents of the Town of Magrath, Cardston County and tourists visiting the area. The current site was constructed in the 1980s and needed a refresh. Richardson was pleased to contribute to this initiative, as it showed support from the provincial government, the Town of Magrath and Cardston County — together, these three partners had raised funding to construct the pool, but needed additional funds to fully complete all elements of the project,” said Dustin Miller, location manager for Richardson Pioneer Magrath.
The donations will go towards purchasing a double-racer slide for the pool. Two slides are planned for the pool — a double-racer slide and a twister slide. While there are manufacturing delays due to the pandemic, the town is hoping to have one installed and running early in the pool season.
Barnett thanked Richardson Pioneer for their generosity towards to pool project.
“They’re a big corporate agriculture business that still wants to contribute to the community, and it makes a big difference,” said Barnett. “We’re grateful for it. Honestly, it makes a big difference for us to complete that project.”
The old community pool was built in the 1980s, and Barnett said it had reached the end of its useful lifespan about 10 years before they decided to construct the new one. Costs to maintain the pool were significant, and when the pandemic occurred, it was “the perfect opportunity” to replace it.
The town is now about $155,000 away from fully funding the $1.8 million project and paying for the waterslides. Once completed, the pool will feature a new leisure pool with multiple water play-and-spray features and a young child-friendly fibreglass slide, a five-lane 25 metres junior Olympic competition pool with a diving board and a new mechanical room. “We have a fairly young population of moms and babies in our Town of Magrath, and it will be a tremendous boost for those moms and babies and families to go and use the pool in a different way. It’s not just a swimming pool, it has a little kiddie pool/slide recreation area as well, and the bigger slide for the kids to use,” said Barnett. “It’s a great change for the town. It’s exciting for us.”
The pool is expected to open on June 1, public health restrictions allowing.