Field house to open Sept. 8

Foothills: A long wait for opening day

By: Don Patterson

  |  Posted: Friday, Aug 29, 2014 04:53 pm

The Foothills Okotoks Field House is scheduled to open to the public on the morning of Sept. 8.
The Foothills Okotoks Field House is scheduled to open to the public on the morning of Sept. 8.
Wheel file photo

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Local sports groups will have more place to train, play and compete when the Foothills-Okotoks Field House opens next week.

The long-awaited facility will open to the public on the morning of Monday, Sept. 8.

It’s something Okotoks Mayor Bill Robertson has been looking forward to for a few years now.

“I am so excited, it’s going to be phenomenal,” he said. “This was one of my election promises from 2010. It’s taken this long, but it’s going to be a fantastic facility.”

The facility includes three fields for soccer and lacrosse. There is also a multi-purpose gym for a variety of sports like basketball, volleyball or tennis. The field house also has a concession, three multi-use meeting rooms and a fitness room for a variety of programs. A running track will open two weeks after opening day.

The Town of Okotoks and MD of Foothills split the $20 million cost of the facility, located just off Highway 7 east of Okotoks. The High Country Sports Facility Fundraising Society was tasked with raising one million dollars to buy equipment and furniture for the facility.

It’s been a long road to opening day.

Construction on the facility began in the fall of 2012 and it was first hoped the facility could be open by fall 2013. However, work was delayed after the first sections of the building were blown over in a windstorm in December 2012. The facility then faced a number of other delays forcing the opening date back further.

It’s all worth it for Robertson, saying the facility will provide much needed space for sports groups in the foothills. As well, he said the facility has enough room to meet the region’s needs for years to come as foothills’ communities continue to grow.

“It’s not going to be fully utilized when it opens, there’s going to be room for expansion,” he said.

Facility manager Shannon Kleibrink said equipment is being moved in this week to be ready for opening day.

“We will have everything in place by that date,” she said.

According to Kleibrink, the facility will first be open on a drop-in basis to give people time to try out the facility.

“We’ve scheduled a bunch of drop in activities that are all on our website and on the following week, a bunch of the user groups will start,” she said.

Open gym times will be available when user groups don’t book fields.

Drop in rates for the walking track and the play fields or gym are $6 per person for adults and $5 for seniors and youths.

For more information, to book times and to see a schedule for the field house, visit www.foothillsokotoksregionalfieldhouse.com.


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