Your Donations at Work (and Play)


Bears on the Beach playground renewal official ribbon cutting July 1st after the parade

Well we did it. Thanks to Waskesiu Foundation donors, volunteers and supporters like you, the Bears on the Beach are nestled into their final place (after a few adjustments of course) and ready to welcome children of all ages for creative play. We can’t thank you enough!

The playground build took place May 28 to June 1 in Waskesiu and started off on a very chilly and windy Thursday morning. Volunteers unpacked equipment for a solid two hours – the quickest the manufacturer has encountered in builds of similar size. What a great community of volunteers we have!

The crane made an appearance to lift the extremely heavy tree into place as well as move the bears and crawl-through log on the concrete pads. Little did we know the bears and log would move several more times. Thank goodness for the expertise and gentle touch of both Alex and Brian as skid steer operators.

The time and talents of the volunteers shined through each day of the build. Workers carefully measured where equipment was to go and flagged it with a pink stake. Others attached railings, decks, hand holds, steps, tree toppers and much more. Still more assembled the correct hardware, read build plans, dug (and re-dug) countless holes, fed the crew or hauled concrete. Many lessons were learned from tying knots, levelling posts, or changing to a bigger hammer.

Over 60 volunteers and 210 donors helped make the playground renewal a success. A very special thank you to Parks Canada as the project partner in the build. Parks Canada donated significant financial and in-kind resources both planned and spontaneous (can you say we need a welder?). Staff contributed many hours to the project both on and off the clock. Much appreciated!

Speaking of time, we really must give our heartfelt thanks as well to Derwin and Chris Arnstead who chaired the project from start to finish with more patience, time and attention to detail than could ever be imagined. Thank you both!

We’d also like to extend our appreciation to Nagy Holdings and Brian (Gunner) Gaetz for the build, Thorpe Brothers for the crane, and B+B Concrete (for the concrete of course). Not to mention a big shout out to The Hawood Inn and Waskesiu Trading Post for keeping the troops fed (and an extra hug to Myrna Nagy for treating the crew to a batch of her home-made chilli and cookies from scratch).

If you happen to be in the townsite, head on down to the beach for a peek at the playground. It’s ready for use and will be enhanced with vine climbers and a rope bridge later this month.

Don’t miss the official grand opening (including ribbon cutting ceremony) of the Bears on the Beach playground renewal on July 1st, shortly after the Canada Day parade.

What fantastic teamwork! Thank you for your help in building the Waskesiu community!

To see more photos of the build, please visit our Facebook page.


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