BRUNO — On the final day of the decade, Bruno residents not only celebrated the coming of the new year, but the new artificial ice plant in their arena.
“I've been asked many times: why now for artificial ice?” said Dale Glessman, Bruno’s mayor, at the Dec. 31 event, which saw a ribbon cutting, supper, fireworks, and games played by the local hockey and broomball teams.
“We have so many young families in our community that have decided to make this their home. The artificial ice is a great addition to the services provided in town. It will benefit the current population and future generations as well.”
To make the new addition to the arena possible, an artificial ice committee, with the support of the Town of Bruno and RM of Bayne, raised $380,000.
“Our goal was $380,000 and we did that in less than a year,” said Carla Julé, the co-chair of the artificial ice committee.
“We were hoping if we could even get half fundraised, we would get a loan for the rest and we didn't even need to do that.
The effort began in January 2019 with a $100,000 from the local credit union. The ice plant was installed early in December.
Julé said gathering the committee members to cut the ribbon was exciting.
“That made it feel really real, when we had everybody gathered around.”
The co-chair said the artificial ice will allow the hockey teams, broomball teams and figure skating club to start earlier in the season and continue into the playoffs without renting ice elsewhere. Games will no longer have to be cancelled due to warm weather.
As well, the ice quality will remain the same over the entire season.
“That's the nice part because it's a consistent ice surface all the time now,” Julé said.
Julé added the artificial ice will allow the arena to rent time to other communities, providing a new source of revenue.
The co-chair acknowledged all those that made the project possible.
“We want to thank everybody that donated and then of course all of our committee members and community members that helped make this become a reality.”