In a strategic planning meeting between representatives of PARC and its two of its member municipalities, the Town and RM of Gilbert Plains, it was identified that an immediate economic issue was the permanent closure of the town’s bowling alley. The center had served the greater region for nearly 40 years and was an important family centre for one of the largest youth groups in rural Manitoba.
After meeting with an interested group of residents in June a decision was made late July to put the project together. PARC rallied its network of stakeholders in a fury of activity and by the end of August title had passed to a community owned cooperative.
Progress by Sept 24 has been made with the bowling alley as new wiring and gyproc has been installed over the lanes, painting is being completed and new lighting fixtures are waiting to be installed. The work is being completed to meet new fire code regulations.
The lanes are generally in good condition but some wood has been replaced as part of regular maintenance before it’s resurfaced with glow finish. The special wood was ordered over a month ago and has finally arrived.
Much of the centre has a new coat of paint which will match the glow-in-the dark carpet that will arrive toward the end of October. The existing carpet will be cleaned up for now. Automatic scoring has been ordered and the suppliers are waiting on parts for the new LCD screens so the installation date will be briefly delayed. Nintendo Wii video gaming system has been ordered and is expected to arrive shortly and will occupy the space once used by the golf simulator. Discussions with a vending company may bring a different choice of games for the family games room.
New bowling shoes have arrived and a new display case is being built behind the concession as to be separated from the food serving area. Ideas to revamp the concession counter are being discussed but those changes can wait until next year. Some modification is being completed to the counter to accommodate additional sinks required by the Health Department. More concession equipment as well as chairs and tables have already arrived.
The application for the liquor permit has been submitted and it is hoped to be approved later in October. The sign developer is working on the new sign which is to arrive and be installed by the weekend.
Approximately 40 people showed up to register at the bowling alley on Sept 19. As the centre is community owned the Board would like to accommodate people’s busy schedules so anyone who missed registration can still do so. League bowling is expected to start Oct 5.
Anyone interested in providing a sponsorship for this community owned initiative can still do so by contacting Heartland Lanes at 548-2366.
A lot of progress has been made and the Board is just finishing the final details before the doors are opened to the public. The tentative opening date of Sept 25 will be extended a couple days as the final work is allowed to be completed. Please listen to CKDM for updates.
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For more information, please contact one of the Board members or call Heartland Lanes at 548-2366.