By Jordan Parker
A day after Skate With The Broncos, Gull Lake School was another big step closer to realizing their goal of having their track-and-field project completed by next school year.
Teachers Neal Boutin and Adele Kirwan sat down for a dual interview with The Advance last week to discuss progress on the project.
“We served food at the event, which came from staff and track parents,” said Kirwan. There were also tickets sold for a 50/50 and a Broncos jersey was raffled off in support of the track-and-field project.
“All the athletes in grades four, five and six sold tickets prior to the night, and we sold them night-of too,” said Kirwan.
$735 was made off the meal and $759 was brought in from ticket sales.
“I think for our staff, it was really good. It was another example where we picked up and helped out,” said Boutin.
“Some older students couldn’t attend due to prior sports commitments. But younger kids came gussied up in Broncos gear and loved having the players skate with them. They played soft puck and kids had their faces painted. It’s been a great thing for us.”
Boutin thanked the Broncos and Winquist Ventures for putting on the event.
“It’s been a great thing for us and this town. We know the Broncos usually have a game in the middle of each week, but this week they didn’t. It was amazing to have them here on a down week in Gull Lake,” he said.
Kirwan was equally appreciative.
“The team doesn’t have to make time, but it’s nice to see they value areas around Swift Current and see the value we bring to the attendance of their games.” With the plans done and things getting underway,Kirwan is excited for what’s ahead.
“We’re looking at construction as soon as we can get into the ground. Even if we get a few nice weeks in like we had at the end of November and early December, that would be great,” she said.
“We are also in the process of finding the right people to head up this project. The challenge is knowing who to contact. But we have a designated space for the football boys to play on in the fall.”
Boutin can hope the field is ready, but has made arrangements otherwise for his team in case.
“We made a deal with the town to use existing land they have if the grass isn’t ready,” he said. “We’re so proud of the buy-in from the kids. We have kids who are no longer here who would help us out. Kids would give lots of their time for a project they knew they wouldn’t get direct benefit from. Some went over and above, knowing they’d never use it. I’m so proud of how this community is coming together.”
Kirwan says she can finally “feel like it’s really happening”, and things are coming together.
“We did so much work selling, and we worked really hard to get where we are financially. We were doing anything we could,” she said.
But it’s not just football players and track kids who are excited for the new facility.
“Members in this community are starting to see it as a school project, and not just a track or football thing. Young kids play on the track, recess is held there. People see it as our project instead of a football project,” she said. “People have begun to see that their kids may benefit from it in a few years. They’re really getting on board. It’s encouraging, and even the seniors are approaching and asking if they can use it when it’s done.
“People, regardless of their age, are starting to get excited about the facility.”
You can donate to the project by contacting Adele Kirwan at Gull Lake School, at 306-672-3551