The Rossland Arts Centre Society is pleased to announce that they have been chosen as finalists in the National Competition the Next Great Save Competition: Vote and Help Us Win $50,000 For the Rossland Drill Hall!
The National Trust for Canada’s Next Great Save competition, presented by Ecclesiastical Insurance is helping to revitalize outstanding heritage places across the country.
We are fortunate that our project, the Rossland Drill Hall Arts and Innovation Centre, has been chosen, along with nine other finalists, to compete for the generous prize. The competing heritage place with the most public votes will receive $50,000 towards their project.
The Rossland Arts Centre Society formed in 2018 out of a need for space to make art and to save a landmark heritage building. Our board has been working steadily on this project for the last 5 years.
We began as a small group of friends with a common interest; to create a legacy project for artists and future generations. In the time honored tradition of grassroots organizations we started out by meeting with people at the local pub, where we dreamed, and shared our vision. We formed a society and reached out to city council who were instrumental in connecting us with the right people in government to brainstorm how to make this happen.
When we were finally getting close to completing the ministry to ministry transfer of the building all of a sudden the world came to a halt. A global pandemic closed business and government offices stayed shuttered. Our application languished on a desk, even though our lives went on; our board saw members leave and new ones join, babies were born, other kids started school, and others changed careers. There were huge changes on our board by the second coming of signing the lease. We were older and wiser and knew that we needed the strongest possible team to get us through this.
We held public information sessions and tours of the building in one enormous push to assemble a dream team. As a board most of us were nearing year 5 and near-burnout. We looked at our team and it’s strengths, asked a couple members to step down officially for a bit so we could bring in new energy and specific skills. We reorganized our board governance which included a renovation committee. Only one of us had the skill to be on that committee and she had just started a demanding new position. The tours of the building ended up being packed full of people. Artists, Art supporters, their partners all of them wanted a peak inside, and once they were there our dream became clear to many of them and the right people stepped forward.
I’m sure it wasn’t actually overnight but It felt like it; we gave our newly formed renovation committee 4 or 5 of these 100 page studies and documents which we had amassed during our five years and Hall Broadhurst, a retired project manager, assembled them and a preliminary scope of work provided by Josh Swain into a working plan which included the first question that needed to be answered, “what is the condition of the foundation?” because it is mentioned in every single report and study as a potential issue. If it can’t be repaired then the project cannot continue." It was the right question and the one that we needed to have the answer to before anything else.
It is this first step alone that will cost close to $50,000 so winning this prize will really get the project rolling. In the mean-time we are busy writing other grant applications to cover the mounting costs to bring the building up to code and make it fully accessible.
How can you help? Don’t just vote once! You can vote once one per day from January 20th to February 22nd. Write “Vote today” on a post it note and put it somewhere you will not forget. We really need hundreds of people to vote every day to be contenders in the contest.
Please note that once you click "vote," you will be sent a confirmation email, and you must click once more on that link to complete the process.
Visit our profile page to vote for us and to find out more about the Drill Hall’s historical significance, details on the extensive renovation work needed to open it’s doors as the Rossland Drill Hall Arts and Innovation Centre. The Rossland Arts Centre Society looks forward to showing you, and other folks across Canada, that the Rossland Drill Hall deserves to be saved.
Please help support us in the competition by voting daily, and by getting the word out to the community so we all can benefit from an arts and innovation hub right in the historic centre of our mountain town.
Want to learn more about the other finalists! Click here: https://nationaltrustcanada.ca/.../nextgr.../competition2022