By Sandra Bannard, Executive Director

“If Only Money Grew on Trees… We’d be Rich.”

Sounds a bit like the Bare Naked Ladies hit single from the 1990’s but for now we are using it as the slogan for the Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks Council’s July Fundraising Campaign.  As a not-for-profit organization, the Parks Council is working to enhance the opportunities for recreation and environmental education within the Eagle Point Provincial Park and the Blue Rapids Provincial Recreation Area.

A UNIQUE ENTITY

Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks Council is a unique entity in the province of Alberta as it is the only community based Parks Council that actively plays a role in park planning and management.  Numerous recreational facilities have been developed through the extensive work of the Parks Council and the many operating partners who belong to the organization.

Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks house extensive hiking trail systems, mountain bike trails, ATV trails, an archery facility, a gun shooting range, boat launch areas, cross country ski trails, snow shoe trails, and coming in 2019 the new Rotary Pembina Nordic Ski Club Education &  Events Centre.

The Parks Council also facilitates an extensive Environmental Education Programs free for area residents, youth groups and school students to participate.  Over 2000 participant learning opportunities are facilitated annually from Parks Council staff.  The Environmental Education Programs have an emphasis on specific environmental subjects, as well as promotes time in the outdoors as being good for overall well-being and environmental stewardship.  Many teachers comment on how exciting and valuable it is for students to have hands-on learning opportunities facilitated by passionate facilitators in the local parks. Students not only learn about specific environmental issues but also learn about the exceptional recreational facilities and opportunities that they have access to in the local area.

FUNDRAISING KICK-OFF

The fundraising campaign began on July 1st during the Canada Day Parade with tree seedlings being handed out to parade spectators with a request for donations to the Parks Council.  For the first three weeks of July area residents can talk to Eagle Point- Blue Rapids Parks Council Staff and Volunteers at the local Evergreen Farmers Market on Wednesday’s at the Mackenzie Conference Centre from 10:30 AM- 1:30 PM.  Eagle Point Blue Rapids Council Members and staff will happily accept donations, share information about the organization, area facilities and the environmental education programs that are offered.

FUNDRAISING WIND-UP

The official fundraising campaign will wind up at the Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks Council Annual Parks Day Celebration at Willey West Campground on Saturday July 21, 2018.  Parks Day is free to the public and is a great opportunity for area residents or visitors to partake in actives such as canoeing, ATV rides, archery, river boat rides, kid’s games, music and First Nations drummers and dancers.  Please note that some Parks Day activities require advanced registration.  Participants will have the opportunity to make a contribution to the Parks Council at Willey West Campground on Parks Day. For individuals or organizations that would like more information about the Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks Council please check out the website at www.epbrparkscouncil.org or call 780-898-5234.  Donate via our website at www.epbrparkscouncil.org/donate or drop off at the Eagle Point-Blue Rapids Parks Council Office located on the 2nd floor of the Provincial Building at 5136-51 Avenue or by mail at Box 7355, Drayton Valley, T7A 1S6.