February 17th, 2021 ~ Vol. 91 No. 7
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Council Discusses Pulling Ice at Coleman Sports Complex
Unsure of Usage over coming months
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
David Selles
Pass Herald Reporter
During February 9th's Council Meeting, members of Council discussed whether or not to pull the ice at the Coleman Sports Complex early due to continued restrictions on usage from the Alberta government.

Pincher Creek is continuing to keep their ice in for their minor hockey teams who are allowed under restrictions to practice with 10 players on the ice at a time.

Councillor Sygutek asked when the municipality usually pulls the ice at the complex.

CAO Thomas says in a normal year the main ice is pulled around mid-March and the curling ice is pulled after easter.

Councillor Sygutek then asked if it's worth it for the municipality to keep the ice in at this point in time.

"I know that there's a small portion of midgets but there's no peewee's coming to practice here and there's no bantams that will practice here. We have a very small novice group that might. The figure skating group may as well. Is it feasible for the taxpayer to fork out that kind of money for a month and a half?"
continued below ...
CAO Thomas said it's not something administration has looked into yet as Council has given them no prior indication that they'd want to pull the ice early.

Councillor Ward added that the curling club has already cancelled the remainder of their season.

A number of communities around Alberta have already pulled their ice as well.

Cardston, Claresholm, Nanton have all pulled their ice and Fort Macleod had it in the works as well.

Councillor Anctil agreed with Councillor Sygutek that it's something that should be looked into.

According to CAO Thomas, the biggest amount of savings would come from the chiller for the ice being off.

Councillor Glavin said she'd like to see what usage will look like before taking the ice out.

"I'd like to wait until at least we know what the user groups are doing. I understand there's a cost to it but if we're only saving around $10,000-$15,000 I'd vote against it."

Councillor Sygutek says she'd like to see a decision made sooner than later.
continued below ...
"I don't want to be waiting two weeks to get that decision."

Council brought in Manager of Community Services, Trent Smith, to discuss the amount of usage the ice will see over the next few weeks.

After checking there is roughly 40 hours worth of bookings for ice time over the next two weeks.

"We've just started on this but we do have tentative and confirmed bookings," said Smith.
"It looks like figure skating is going to lose their ability to host their Kids can Skate program so we'll be losing those hours but they are going to add a few hours on to split their kids up due to number limits. With the recommendation of Skate Canada, they'd like to see only three kids on the ice at once. Ideally they could be using the hours for the Kids can Skate program."

As for minor hockey, Smith says that is also being sorted out.

"Our local minor hockey program can't play games but they were in conversation last night with me and are booking their two local teams to practice here. However, they have to split one of the teams. They have said that if there will be weekend ice, they'd be interested in that as well."

After hearing that information, Council agreed to keep the ice in for those user groups to take advantage of.
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February 17th, 2021 ~ Vol. 91 No. 7
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