The Gravenhurst Rotary Club hopes to celebrate its 85th year by bringing an amphitheatre to Gravenhurst.
The proposed amphitheatre would be located on Gull Lake Park on the hill overlooking the barge venue.
David Reid made a presentation before council to discuss Rotary’s plans. He said that for its 85th anniversary the club wants to do something special.
“We thought of all kinds of different things as to what we could do for a project and a town that we wanted to have a wow factor,” Reid said.
According to his presentation, the amphitheatre would be built into the hill at Gull Lake Park overlooking the lake and barge. Reid says that Rotary is hoping to use granite for the seating due to its history in Muskoka and its durability.
Reid highlighted the barge and the park as an underutilized event space that Rotary wants to get more use.
“It’s like a beautiful car that sits in the garage, we want to get it out there,” Reid said.
Rotary is pledging $50,000 of its own money for the project. To get the rest of the funding Rotary is looking for potential grants, finding corporate donors, assistance from the provincial and municipal governments and crowdsourcing.
On the subject of crowdsourcing Reid said that the club had considered various ways to reward contributors including commemorative plaques or allowing donors to purchase a seat with their name on it.
Reid said that the project was to help the local community, including local tourism.
“We really feel that this is a tremendous project for our town,” Reid said.
Mayor Paul Kelly said that given how much Rotary had done at Gull Lake the project was a natural fit.
“I think all of us recognize the incredible work that rotary has done at Gull Lake as shown by it’s called Gull Lake Rotary Park,” Kelly said.
Councillor Penny Varney also said she supported the project.
“I think it is a wonderful project that rotary has taken on, and I am all for it,” Varney said.
The project is in its early stages and Reid says that they are waiting on an elevation study.
Chief Administrative Officer Scott Lucas stated that the town was in discussion with Rotary on the project and that council could vote on assisting the development at a later date.
Kelly added that Rotary has shown its commitment to improving the community.
“We know that Rotarians are passionate about our community and about making a better place. Gull Lake has become a better place because of rotary and everything that they’ve done there,” Kelly said.
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