A community effort to transform the Hazeltons’ condemned arena into an outdoor ice skating rink has been shortlisted for a share in $1 million from the Aviva Community Fund.
The Skeena Ice Arena Association was last month urging the public to vote in an online competition to help it win funding to run an outdoor rink this winter.
To be shortlisted for a prize from Aviva, the projects needed to collect the highest number of votes from friends, family and supporters.
The campaign paid off today when the project was named one of 30 finalists in the Aviva competition.
The Skeena association is asking for $65,000 to purchase a used Zamboni, $20,000 towards a roof and $15,000 to cover operating costs for the three months from January to March.
The outdoor rink is what remains of the Ken Trombley Memorial Arena, which closed suddenly in March because of safety issues with its roof.
Plans to build a new recreation centre were already underway when the old arena was condemned, but an interim solution was needed to keep skaters on the ice until the new facility is built.
The association decided to tear down the arena roof to create an outdoor rink so clubs would have a place to skate this winter.
The group has already committed to running the outdoor facility this winter but it needs more money, having spent part of its operational budget on the roof demolition.
Winners of the competition will be selected by a judging panel and announced on Dec. 2.