The Granum Willow Creek Enhancement Society is hosting another fund-raiser for its community hall project — which now includes the possibility of a brand new hall.
“The society is looking at giving the community an option of new versus refurbishment,” enhancement society president Ben Hann said. “Investigating options is ongoing.”
Community volunteers will lay out a traditional roast beef dinner Friday, April 1 from 5-7 p.m. at Granum school.
“I’ve been recruiting a lot of community help for the dinner,” enhancement society member Eleanor Rondeau said.
There will be a silent auction along with the meal.
“Among other things we’ve got an Easter basket of goodies, a set of thermoses, a hand-crafted wooden bowl, and some binoculars,” Rondeau said.
Support for the community hall project continues to be strong, Hann said.
“Granum never has a problem with people helping out with the preparations for fund-raising suppers — or coming out to financially support them,” Hann said. “There are many of the same faces in both cases. That’s what our community is all about.”
Hann anticipates a good turnout for the supper.
“We expect between 280 and 320. But we’ll prepare for more, so don’t be shy about coming out for a good meal.”
The society has raised just under $5,000 so far toward the possible restoration of Blunden Hall.
It has a long way to go. Estimates last year put renovation costs in the neighbourhood of $1-million.
But while having completed some minor repairs to the roof of the existing hall, the enhancement society is also considering the option of a completely new hall.
No decision has yet been made as to which route to go.
Apart from local fund-raising, so far there have been no government grants toward the hall project.
“The Municipal District of Willow Creek owns the existing building, and the landscape of fiscal spending has changed dramatically in the past two years for all levels of government,” Hann said.
In any case, before the society can apply for a government grant of any kind, it will have to make a decision, Hann said.
“The option of new versus refurbishment is a key element in the application,” Hann said.
Hann spoke highly of the generosity — and patience — of the people of Granum and surrounding area.
“The task of re-building, or building, a community hall is a time consuming endeavour, just like most things in a small community that wants to have a certain amenity,” Hann said.
“The fund-raising area in any town is only so big, and every time a group, committee, school, church, or club wants to raise money, we go back to the same well — the residents urban and rural.”
“So, trying to cut yet another piece out of this generous giving pie has the challenge of crowding too much want beside only so much money. The thing about the community hall is . . . the difference with this want is . . . that it has the ability to give back to the people that support it, and give people a place to support each other as a community.”
“The very name community hall is all inclusive,” Hann said. “If our efforts are worthy and the will of our community rural and urban is to have a community hall, we will make it happen.”