Working Hard To Save The Bothwell Arena

Jamie Beatty and Jordan Bray speaking at Monday night's council meeting about the Bothwell Area Sports Centre. October 3, 2016. (Photo by Natalia Vega)

The Bothwell Area Sports Centre is taking strides to create better utilization of the arena.

During Monday night’s council meeting, Vice President of the Bothwell Area Recreation Advisory Committee Jordan Bray and Executive Jamie Beatty presented a deputation.

The report specified their goal increasing arena usage and the steps needed that could potentially help the arena succeed financially.

The deputation had been well received from council.

Councillor Steve Pinsonneault asked for council’s support to further investigate the feasibility of some of the recreational recommendations. The motion carried in a unanimous vote.

“We’re happy with the way things went last night,” says Bray. “We’re really hopeful for what’s ahead.”

Bray says it’s not clear exactly when these meetings will take place, but he’s confident with moving forward.

“We feel like we’re at least safe until the next budget, but we’re not going to rest on our laurels,” says Bray.

Going into January’s budget meeting, there had been concerns regarding the closure of the arena, but they were allotted time to come up with new programming initiatives.

Beatty says the potential closure had been an eye-opening experience. Since then, the committee has been working to find solutions to common problems not just seen at the Bothwell arena, but at other local arenas as well.

“We started with Bothwell but then realized the other ten arenas within Chatham-Kent are currently – or will be in the future, potentially experiencing some of the same hardships,” says Beatty. “We identified a lot of constraints that were hindering the maximum usage of the arenas.”

Beatty says some restructuring and promotion can go a long way in insuring the arena is utilized more often.

“With better utilization of resources we can actually make more money for the community centres that are already existing,” says Beatty.

To read the full deputation put forward during Monday’s council meeting click here.