Vanderhoof council searches for public works head, rec centre update

Rec centre opens in November, sturgeon tourism up, community foundation in place

Recreation centre update

Grand opening of the renovated Integris Community Centre is now scheduled for November.

The YMCA of Northern B.C. and Nechako Valley Arts Council are currently the main groups housed by the centre. Other organizations interested in renting space can contact Hilary Irvine from the District of Vanderhoof.

 

Sturgeon tourism up

On Sept. 19, Wayne Salewski of the Nechako White Sturgeon Recovery Initiative presented to the district council a tourism update of Vanderhoof’s conservation centre this summer.

Supported by three student guides for the first time, over 460 visitors — not including those in requested tours — from places as far away as Texas and Vancouver Island toured the centre this season.

In June, the sturgeon conservation centre was a port of call, along with the Ancient Forest east of Prince George, for the Lieutenant Governor of B.C.’s Stewards of the Future Conference in the north.

A group of Swedish foresters and woodlot owners also visited the centre for the third time.

Locally, the centre is involved in fish and water stewardship education within the school district, as well as a research base for regional post-secondary studies.

Though outdoor signage now facilitates self-guided tours and learning during off-hours, a stewardship centre with education spaces and research offices will allow the facility to expand its tourist season, Salewski said. Thirteen tours have gone through the centre in the first half of September.

 

Public works leadership vacant

The District of Vanderhoof lost its public works supervisor and foreman within two weeks; Paul Carver and Chad Westbrook finished their last days on Sept. 21 and Sept. 30 respectively.

 

Community foundation in place

Vanderhoof’s community foundation now has $150,000 on its books for future community projects. Half of the amount came from matching grant funding from Northern Development Initiative Trust, while the District of Vanderhoof and Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako contributed $50,000 and $25,000 respectively.

Chaired by Kathie LaForge, the 12-member foundation board of directors will be discussing fundraising ideas for growing the fund.

 

– with files from the District of Vanderhoof