Rotary donates $125k to local sports groups

Rotary donates $125k to local sports groups

The Meadowridge Rotary Club donated $125,000 to local sports groups on Tuesday, money that will help build and maintain sports facilities for children in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

The local Rotary club donated $75,000 to the Ridge Canoe and Kayak Club, $30,000 to the Meadow Ridge Knights community football program, and $20,000 to the Golden Ears Athletics club, at a luncheon on Tuesday.

Rotary member and former Maple Ridge mayor Gordy Robson said the money raised will help ensure local children will have affordable sports options with top-notch facilities.

“This represents the money we’ve raised from our annual sports banquets for the last two years,” he said. “We’ve been holding the banquets for the last 20 years.”

The Ridge Canoe and Kayak Club plans to use the donation as seed money towards its proposed boathouse on Whonnock Lake.

The RCKC was founded in 1982, and was originally housed in a shipping container. The not-for-profit club is currently housed in an addition to the Whonnock Lake Community Centre.

The Meadow Ridge Knights will use their donation to fund a scoreboard for the artificial turf Rotary Field at Samuel Robertson Technical secondary.

“It will be just like Friday Night Lights, the same as at Empire Field,” said Robson.

Golden Ears Athletics, meanwhile, will be using its donation to replace the old trailers in which they store track equipment with new, leak-free units.

Meadowridge Rotary is currently raising funds for local sports organization with the first annual Rotary Duck Race. The race takes place July 31 at Maple Ridge Park, with the grand prize being a new 2011 Jeep Wrangler Sport 4X4.

Rubber duckies can be adopted for $10 each.

So far, more than 6,000 ducks have been sold, says Robson.

“The sports banquet funds the facilities, and the duck race funds the operations,” he said.

The first $25,000 raised through the fundraiser will go to KidSport, a charity that helps pay for sports registration fees for needy kids.

The remainder will go to local sports organizations that take part in selling ducks for the fundraiser.

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