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New gym needs $450K to grow

Committee wants school gym to be fit for community

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Members of the Queenston School community are moving closer to the construction of what they say is a desperately-needed gymnasium.


Colleen McFadden — chair of the Queenston School Gym Committee who has two daughters at school — said the new gym is scheduled to open in September 2013.


McFadden said there is some work to do before that dream is realized and the committee is set to launch a fundraising campaign to raise $450,000 to ensure the new gym would meet the needs of the larger community.


Parents and area residents are invited to attend an upcoming town hall on Tues., April 24 at 7 p.m. in the school’s multi-purpose room at 245 Queenston St. to hear more about the committee’s plans and vision. The committee is also reaching out to the business and corporate community.


The school was built in 1931 with gym space not adequate for today’s physical education programming, McFadden said.


The province, along with the Public School Finance Board and Winnipeg School Division, are committed to the gym as part of the division’s five-year capital budget approved by the Department of Education in 2010.


McFadden said the province has committed to a 4,000 sq.-ft. gym, but an extra 800 sq.-ft. of space is required to meet the needs of the community.


"The gym is desperately needed for both the students and the community," McFadden said. "I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard recreational basketball groups don’t have the space to practice."


"The (new) gym will be available evenings and weekends for both recreational and competitive sports."


McFadden said the committee is working with organizers at Central Corydon Community Centre (C4) to help improve services for more than 34,000 area residents.


Queenston’s principal, Wade Gregg, noted the project blueprints include an elevator for wheelchair access to the school’s three levels, new dressing rooms, storage areas and a new front entrance to the school with a large foyer.


Individual and corporate contributions of $500 or more to the gym enhancement campaign will be recognized on a wall plaque placed in perpetuity in the school. All contributions of more than $20 will receive a charitable tax receipt, McFadden said.


For more information, or to make a contribution, visit blogs.wsd1.org/queenston. Cheques can also be dropped off at the school.

simon.fuller@canstarnews.com

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