Rimbey, AB –It’s the development many user groups in central Alberta have been eagerly awaiting. Rimbey’s major new multi-purpose facility, the Agrim Centre, is ready for business!
“We’ve taken our first event bookings, and are looking for more,” stated Tim Edge, President of the Rimbey Agricultural Society.
Society Vice-President Ken Whitelock, who is managing construction of the $5.9 million project, explains they’re into the lock-up phase. That means all the exterior walls, doors and windows are in place, and work is now underway on the interior of the 60,000 square foot building.
“We’re planning to be operational the first of April,” said Whitelock. “We have a lot of construction to do inside to meet that date, but it’s going to happen.”
The parking lot is ready, and the sand is in the riding arena, waiting to be mixed and laid down after the heaters and fans are installed. While the kitchen and board rooms won’t be finished, and bathroom facilities are limited, the organization is ready to receive riders, sales, 4-H shows and various other activities.
“Once the finishing touches do happen, we’ll have a grand opening celebration,” added Edge.
“We’ve had a lot of interest in using the building already, so we wanted to get the word out that we are accepting bookings now.”
Along with the interior amenities, the Rimbey Ag Society also plans to re-purpose the older facilities on their grounds into indoor box stalling, as funds allow.
Thanks to solid support from the community, local government, and sponsors, Edge points out their financial picture is also progressing. The completion of Phase One is close to 75% debt-free, and the organization continues to manage its funds responsibly.
“We’ve outlined our budgets up to 2017,” noted Edge. “We have enough money in the bank to make the entire set of payments for one whole year on our mortgage.”
However, there are still plenty of opportunities for partnering sponsors to get involved.
“We want to name the main riding area, and of course, we want to name the building itself. We’ll tailor-make any sponsorship package for those who want to be involved. For example, the Rimbey Rodeo Association wanted to name the announcers stand, for their contribution.”
Cory Glenn is excited to have secured the first official booking for the Agrim Centre. He’s holding his fourth annual Ranch Horse Round Up Sale (www.ranchhorseroundup.com) on April 25th in the facility.
“For me, it’s going to be a turn-key operation,” commented Glenn. “You walk in and everything you need is going to be there. They’ve put in a 30 foot door, which is the biggest one in Alberta. The facility is set up to accommodate anything you really want to do. You’re not going to have to do a lot of work to be able to put your functions on.”
In addition to the Ranch Horse Round Up Sale, the Great Canadian Performance Horse Sale will be held May 1-2 at the Agrim. Several other events like 4-H shows, bull sales, team pennings, team ropings and mounted shooting competitions have already secured their appearance in the building.
“The future is extremely bright for the facility,” emphasized Edge.