Trent Ernst, Editor
One of Tumbler Ridge’s best-known societies is throwing in the chlorine-stained towel.
Originally formed by Janet Hartford, the Tumbler Ridge Indoor Swimming Pool Society was created to raise money to build a swimming pool, which was completed years ago.
When it was first formed, TRISPS raised $40,000 towards the building of the (then new) swimming pool.
The group has continued to hold its annual craft fair to buy items that the District may not pay for. However, they have not requested money in the last few years, meaning that the society’s fundraising efforts are for not. The group no longer maintains its registered society and is therefore not legally a charitable organization. As a result of this and other factors, the society is calling it quits.
However, this doesn’t mean the end of the popular annual craft fair, the high water mark on the group’s calendar.
Currently, there are four members of the swimming pool society: Carol Poff, Amanda Coulson, Carey Garner and Ellen Sager.
Sager says that three of the four members are members of the Forever Young Society. “As volunteers, we feel that our efforts should go to a non-profit charitable organization rather than to benefit the taxpayers.”
She says that for the last decade, that is what the group has been doing. Now, they are planning on transitioning the craft fair to raise funds for the Forever Young Society.
This does create some issues that need to be addressed, says Sager. As the fundraiser was for the Swimming Pool, which is in the Community Centre, the use of the rooms and hallways, as well as set-up and take down, was waived.
However, says Sager, “None of us are aware of such an agreement. However, [we] would be pleased to negotiate and agreement with the District.” She suggest that perhaps a small amount of funds raised could be donated to the Swimming pool to continue this tradition of waiving fees.
Mayor Wren says council has set in place a policy so that non-profit organizations are able to use the facilities for events like this already, so doesn’t see the issue. “That’s what the Community Centre is for,” he says.
So, the next time the craft fair roles around, don’t be surprised if it goes by a new name: the Forever Young Craft Fair.