| Feb 08, 2007

Feature Article - February 8, 2007

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Feature Article - February 8, 2007

"Project End Zone"selling bricks and mortarby Jeff Green

“Project End Zone” has been having a good run of late. This campaign to fund an addition and improvements to the North Frontenac Arena received municipal support from both Central and South Frontenac Councils, and is hoping to hear soon from the Frontenac Community Futures Development Corporation about funding for the blueprints for the addition.

And now they are starting to sell the bricks for the new walls.

Hockey families and other community members are being invited to purchase bricks, at a cost of $100 each, in support of the project.

For each $100 donation, an inscribed plaque will be mounted on a brick that will form part of the interior arena wall.

Under the slogan, “Buy a brick … build a Future, one brick at a time,” “Project End Zone” is providing an opportunity for families to celebrate their special memories related to the arena or to celebrate important individuals.

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Even before the campaign was officially kicked off last Saturday at the arena, several people had come forward expressing interest in purchasing bricks.

“People began responding well to this when we passed out information to hockey families during games over the past few days. Most were trying to decide what to write on the plaque.” said Brad Heyman, past President of the North Frontenac Minor Hockey Association. Some families that have had several children go through minor hockey programs at the arena are considering purchasing several bricks to help support the project.

The Buy a Brick campaign has the ambitious goal of 500 bricks, or $50,000.

“Project End Zone” has an overall goal of $530,000. Plans are in place to begin construction this spring on a 40 foot extension to the west side of the arena. The addition will house 4 new dressing rooms, an officials’ room, a new skate sharpening room, and a storage and meeting room. In addition, the front lobby, the bleachers and current dressing rooms will also be renovated.

The arena is over 30 years old, and one of the changes that has taken place in that time is the rise of girls’ and women’s hockey. The renovations are needed not only to spruce up the building, but also to make it more suitable for current use.

Throughout its 7 months of operation each year, the arena is in use most of the time: for public skates, children and adult league play, and by the Frontenac Flyers.

Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars has been raised for Project End Zone thus far, including $200,000 from Central and South Frontenac and $60,000 from corporate and individual sponsors.

The fundraising committee is working on other fundraising applications, including ones to the Bell Sports Fund and the Trillium Foundation.

“But public support is crucial” says Arena Manager Jim Stinson, “Funders want to know that the people who use the facilities support them. It is great to see the “Buy a Brick” campaign get off to a good start.”

In addition to the “Buy a Brick” initiative, a fundraising skate will be held on March 25th, and planning is underway for a golf tournament on July 26th. The fundraising committee will be releasing more information on those events in the upcoming weeks.

For further information, contact the arena (374-2177) or Carole Sparling at 376-3354.

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