“It’s been a really great project to do and a really great community to do it in,” said Jared Sales with Celtic and Eldorado Construction. (Raena Jack photo)

“It’s been a really great project to do and a really great community to do it in,” said Jared Sales with Celtic and Eldorado Construction. (Raena Jack photo)

Outdoor skating rink arrives in time for Christmas at Tsideldel

Ice flooded on new multi-purpose rink earlier this week

Tsideldel First Nation members of all ages will be able to lace-up their skates for a spin this winter.

After months of construction, a new outdoor multi-purpose rink by Tsi Deldel School was flooded Monday, Dec. 14.

“I think it’s great for the community,” said operational maintenance manager Raena Jack.

“It’s been in the works for about five years or so.”

Celtic and Eldorado Construction worked with the Tsilhqot’in community, located 145 kilometres west of Williams Lake, in planning and designing the roughly $500,000 facility late last winter and early spring while COVID-19 was beginning to emerge.

Owner and general manager Jared Sales said while the virus did put a delay to things, they were able to work throughout the summer to complete the rink.

Read More: Williams Lake Skating Club welcomes new coach to team

Sales said finishing touches still need to be wrapped up to some of the complementing amenities such as change rooms, and areas for warming, storage, a concession and scorekeeping and announcing boxes.

“This is the first project that we’ve had the opportunity to work with the Tsideldel community and it has been great,” Sales said.

“Building a facility like this has its own awards, but we take a lot of pride in the fact, too, when we get to see the use the community gets out of it and seeing them playing on the ice.”

Jack called the new outdoor rink made of modern materials a significant upgrade from their previous rink, which was more than 30-years-old and built out of wood.

“Usually, every winter we have a winter carnival that’s normally held at the rink, so we can’t wait until next year,” Jack said, noting she is hoping COVID-19 will be gone by then, by which point they will be able to hold the all-day event.

The rink will also provide a space for events and activities such as basketball and ball hockey in the spring and summer.

Read More: Are outdoor ice rinks safe? Experts say skating is low risk, but precautions needed

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