The Selkirk Saddle Club got support in principle from city council on Dec. 11 for their plans to build an 18-metre by 36-metre riding arena at the club grounds just south of the Illecillewaet River.
Club secretary Tanya Secord told council they’ve raised $42,000 so far and are seeking out additional grants for the project. “We’ve got four more fundraisers set up between now and the end of January and we’re hoping to be over $50,000 by then, so we’re not sitting back [and] waiting, we’re definitely working hard to get this happening,” she said.
The indoor building will allow more riding opportunities in the winter when snow makes it difficult and slippery to get around on four hooves. In addition, high reservoir levels in the summer limit riding options from the stable area, Secord said.
She said the facility would have several added benefits. It will allow for more children to get involved with riding in the safer environment. It will enable a therapeutic riding program for disabled children, which would be helped by the ability to schedule rides rain or shine.
The club also plans to rent out the facility for other uses, giving examples such as dog obedience classes or search and rescue training as examples.
The club has already completed engineering plans and got building approvals for the concept from the city and landlords BC Hydro. They hope to source most materials locally.