Dead centre in the quiet little village of Edenwold sits a once proud, vibrant hockey rink that’s been around since the 1950s.
Now, the cold rink sits empty, all because of a little insect.
In October, Edenwold Memorial Rink was shut down due to an infestation of wood-eating beetles that have made their way to the roof.
Jordan Nargang is one of the many community members who grew up in the rink and is now a village councillor in the community. He said not having the hockey rink will be a big blow to the community.
“It’s one of our few public buildings in town,” Nargang said. “Just like any small town in Saskatchewan, you are here most of the winter.”
And while the rink is used for hockey and figure skating, the lack of space is also impacting other community services, like the local daycare.
Edenwold Early Years and Youth Centre has been using the rink to help fundraise for a new facility, as well as to allow the children to learn to skate.
“We really like to partner with the rink and do burger nights for the community and just let the public come in and do community skate nights,” Brandy Holmes, the daycare’s director, said. “It’s just a nice way to bring the community together.
“I think it would be really detrimental if the rink was to be closed down permanently. Not only do the children lose the opportunity at the daycare, but everybody in the community,”
For the time being, the neighbouring town of Balgonie is renting out as much ice time as it can for public skating and hockey teams in the area.
“We don’t have a whole lot of ice left but we’re going to try to do what we can to accommodate as best as possible,” Balgonie superintendent Shaun McBane said.
There is no time or cost estimate for what it would take to get the Edenwold Memorial Rink up and running again, but the rink is working with engineers to develop a plan.
Nargang hopes the closure isn’t permanent and people can get back to the ice soon.
“A lot of people before us have been keeping this place afloat and alive before we showed up to help,” Nargang said. “It’s pretty easy to just walk away, it can be pretty daunting and overwhelming…. It’s a lot of extra work but at the end of the day it’s worth it for the next generation to have something to go to.”
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