Heidelberg makes it official with grand opening of new community centre on Saturday afternoon
AFTER A LOT OF effort and a lot of work, the Heidelberg Community Centre is at last holding its grand opening this Saturday for the community.
“I think everybody in Heidelberg is thrilled that it’s there and are eager to see it open and see what’s going to be taking place,” said Bev Baechler, a township employee with the recreation department, and a committee member of the Heidelberg Recreation Association that spearheaded the project.
The air is sure to be jubilant as the rec. association is planning for fun and festive activities alongside the official ribbon-cutting. There will be face painting, a cake cutting, games on the playground for the kids, beverages and tours of the facility which Baechler hopes will be a real community hub for the village.
“It’s just a gathering place that we can again have our fun days that we used to have. All the families come out and enjoy the day, getting to see their neighbours again after the summer recess. Just a gathering place that people can come and have programs there,” said Baechler.
The construction of the new community centre began last summer at the site of the condemned field house at the local park in Heidelberg, completely replacing the rundown building with a brand new facility.
It’s a small centre, says Baechler, featuring a community room, a concession servery and washrooms, but she is hopeful it can be a great asset to all Heidelberg residents.
The community room in particular, is at the core of the new facility, and should be able to accommodate about 70 people in one go.
“It’s a room big enough that we’ll be able to host children’s birthday parties or if somebody wants an open house,” she noted.
“We have a lot of seniors living in town now so it will give them the advantage of not having to drive to other centres to do [activities] or exercise programs. It will all take place right in their own town. We’re hoping that with the new people moving into town with small children, it’ll also be a place for mums and tots can gather and exchange ideas and programs.”
The community centre has been running since mid-July, and is stocked with programs – many of them starting this fall. There are weekly yoga and pilates sessions, classes on babysitting for teens, child safety courses, while the centre itself can be rented out for more activities.
The Heidelberg Recreation Association had been campaigning and fundraising for the community hub for almost a decade, and finally their vision has become reality with the help of several groups. The township itself committed $257,000 towards the project, while $142,000 was provided by an Ontario Trillium Fund grant. The rec. association, for its part, raised $67,000, and another $5,000 was committed by the Paradise and District Lions Club. The project cost $442,000 to complete.
The township’s director of recreation and facilities, Ann McArthur, says she’s happy with the completion of the project.
“The Township of Woolwich council and staff are thrilled to be part of this amazing, accessible community project,” she said in an emailed statement. “The community is very appreciative of the facility and the ability to access recreation programs and rental space for community events and family gatherings in their own back yard. This project was seen through to fruition by a small group of very dedicated and committed community volunteers and with the generous support and vision of Woolwich council.”
The grand opening will be held this Saturday from 1-4 p.m., with the speeches and official ribbon cutting ceremony at 2 p.m. The event is completely open to everyone to attend. People interested in attending the opening, or otherwise dropping by for information and programming, can pass by the centre at 2915 Lobsinger Line. Alternatively, more information can be found online at www.heidelbergpark.ca.
The Heidelberg Community Centre will be the scene of a formal grand opening September 9 from 1-4 p.m.