Fraser River Delta athletes enter McLeod Athletic Park to the cheers of 2,500 spectators in the grandstand of McLeod Athletic Park during the opening ceremony for last July’s B.C. Summer Games.

Fraser River Delta athletes enter McLeod Athletic Park to the cheers of 2,500 spectators in the grandstand of McLeod Athletic Park during the opening ceremony for last July’s B.C. Summer Games.

Summer Games leave lasting financial legacy

Community groups receive $143,371 in funding or equipment

Last summer’s highly successful BC Summer Games hosted by the Township have ensured a legacy that will give a financial boost to sports and the arts for years to come.

Summer Games president Michael Jackstien appeared before Township council on Monday, a year to the day of the Games’ opening, to announce that profits from the event will be distributed between three organizations and projects.

Summer Games Legacy Committee members Mayor Rick Green, Jackstien, Jamey Paterson and Gordon Zacher, were asked to distribute the surplus Games funds to benefit the community and serve as a lasting reminder of the event.

“From the beginning, it was a goal of the 2010 BC Summer Games’ board of directors to stage an event that was financially successful,” Jackstien said.

“Thanks to community and business support and the dedication of many volunteers, the Township hosted one of the most successful Games ever.”

KidSport Langley will receive a $10,000 grant, Langley Arts Council, $20,000, and $52,871 will be put towards construction of a new Willoughby Community Park field house.

The Games came in under budget, and the net income is being shared throughout the community.

KidSport Langley, which was launched in the fall of 2010, breaks down barriers that prevent children from participating in sports by providing grants to local children between the ages of 6 and 18, allowing them to play in a sport season of their choice. The Summer Games legacy will help 50 children access sports opportunities by providing each of them with a $200 grant.

The LAC will put its $20,000 towards the Horsing Around Langley art project.  Artists will design and paint life-sized fibreglass horse statues that will be put on display throughout Langley. Smaller colt statues will be assigned to young artists in schools and youth groups.

Aimed at enhancing the community’s agricultural heritage, Horsing Around Langley is expected to raise a significant amount of money when the statues are auctioned off.  The proceeds will be used to further arts and culture opportunities in Langley.  The LAC will announce more details late.

Another project to benefit from Games is the field house that has been approved for Willoughby Community Park. The building will be constructed in partnership with Langley United Youth Soccer Association and other community partners. It will feature a concession, change rooms, washrooms, storage, and office space.

“It is truly appropriate that profits from the Games will help develop this facility in Willoughby Community Park, as it served as a hub for several of the Summer Games sports activities,” said David Leavers, the Township’s director of recreation, culture, and parks. Sand volleyball, field lacrosse, field hockey, mountain biking, and rugby competitions were all played in the park, which is adjacent to the Langley Events Centre and R. E. Mountain Secondary.

The Summer Games proceeds also allowed several other donations to be made. More than $11,500 worth of kitchen small wares were purchased for use during the Games, then donated to Campbell Valley House, Christian Life Assembly, Friends of Langley Vineyard, Gateway of Hope, Langley Community Services, Langley Senior’s Resource Centre, Southgate Church, Wagner Hills Farm, and Ishtar Transition Housing Society.

An $8,000 industrial dishwasher bought for the Games was donated at Langley Secondary School’s culinary program, and almost $21,000 worth of sports equipment was given to local sport organizations.

More than 32,000 meals were prepared during the massive event, and to ensure no leftovers went to waste, unconsumed food was donated daily to both the Gateway of Hope and the Langley Food Bank, an estimated value of $20,000.

Langley Times