Two Rossland Organizations get Canada 150 Grants
The Rossland Museum and Archives Association will receive $175,000 to help with its renewal project, and Friends of the Rossland Range Society (FORRS) will recive 85,000 to help with improving the Rossland Range Recreation Site.
Mayor Kathy Moore, Museum president Libby Martin, FORRS board chair Kim Deane, and David Wilks, Member of Parliament (MP) from the neighbouring federal riding of Kootenay Columbia, and Alex Atamanenko, our own MP, all spoke in a brief and sunlit ceremony at the Museum grounds.
Moore, Martin and Deane all expressed gratitude for the funding and excitement about the boost it will give our community. Moore pointed out that Rossland and other small communities can’t go ahead with many needed improvements without the involvement of the provincial and federal governments. (Your editor notes that the grant money being bestowed consists of tax dollars paid by taxpayers.)
Martin explained that the Museum is now only $45,000 short of its funding goal of $400,000 for beginning work on Phase I of the renewal project, which has been divided into six phases. “Anybody have a cheque?” she asked.
The first phase will include renovating the entry gallery, relocating and modernizing washrooms, and removing non-weight-bearing walls for more space; the second phase will build a “mine experience” to replace the underground mine-tunnel tour that was a popular attraction from 1967 until its closure in 2010 for safety and liability reasons.
The funding for the Recreation Site improvements will help with the costs of removing “unauthorized structures” when they are replaced with shelters that meet the government’s requirements, and the costs of repairing the old fire lookout building at the summit of Old Glory, and some signage. FORRS agreed to manage the Recreation Site, and created a management plan that has been approved by the government.
While FORRS and recreation site users, and everyone associated with the Museum and its good works can rejoice about the new funding, other deserving but unsuccessful Rossland applicants for those grants must now find funding elsewhere; the Rossland Public Library is beginning its ambitious Renewal Project, and the Rossland Miners Union Hall will be undergoing significant and expensive renovations starting early in 2016.