LOWER SACKVILLE: With the first donation of $10,000 from designer Branko Mizert, the capital campaign for the new Sack-A-Wa Canoe Club kicked off.
During an evening of celebration Feb. 15 at the Kinsmen Community Centre on beautiful First Lake, community members, members of the Sackville Kinsmen Club, and parents of participants in the canoe club heard about it’s history and all the sweat and hard work that brought a dream to reality.And they heard of the $260,000—now $250,000—that is needed to hit the $1.5 million price tag for it.
The celebration came just a few days removed from a big announcement of support from all three levels of government—HRM, the province, and the federal government.
When completed, the new 9,200 square foot building will be a multipurpose recreation facility that will allow Sack-A-Wa—the club that is based out of what many see as just a blue tin building on First Lake Drive—to serve it’s athletes from Hammonds Plains, Beaver Bank, Sackville, Bedford, Mount Uniacke, and surrounding areas much better.
“This is a project me n my office wanted to get done, because it’s important to this community,” said Sackville-Preston-Chezzetcook Liberal MP Darrell Samson.
The federal government, thanks to the push from Samson, contributed $435,000 to the project, while the province invested $722,000. HRM contributed $75,000. The remainder is what Sack-A-Wa is fundraising to collect.
Samson said it took a long time for the simple game of getting province and municipal support for the project.
“It’s not an easy process,” he said.
Samson said funding the new facility wasn’t about making him or the Liberal Party look good, but doing what he was elected to do.
“I simply did my job in getting the federal government to support this new Sack-A-Wa facility,” said Samson.
The building committee chairman gave credit to all the behind-the-scene people who worked tirelessly to bring it together.
“The foot soldiers made this happen,” the man said.
Councillor Steve Craig said Sackville is so blessed with so many Crown Jewels in the community. He credited Samson for pushing the need to fund the project with his federal counterparts.
“Sack-A-Wa is one of those jewels and with it’s new facility will become even more so,” said Craig.
The canoe club said businesses and community members can do so by seeing any club member or through their Go Fund Me page which can be found by searching for “Sackawa” on the website. They have various sponsorship levels, from gold, silver, bronze to a participant ribbon.
The sponsors will be displayed on the Donor Wall inside of the new facility for all to see.
It is hoped that construction crews will be breaking ground in April or May.