Spences Bridge park: close but no cigar

TNRD Director Steve Rice writes about the defeated park referendum.

Dear Editor,

The saying “every vote counts” was never more apparent than in the Park referendum held in Spences Bridge on June 21. After all the ballots were counted, including three spoiled ballots, the Park referendum was defeated 50–49.

It was always the feeling of many folks in Spences Bridge that establishing a park here was a chance for a better quality of life that doesn’t often come along for a small rural community.

Many others felt that any tax increase, even a very small one, was not an option. Others felt the school property was a park just the way it was and didn’t need any improvements.

At the end of the day it came down to one vote; so every vote does count.

With the number of children (especially at Kumsheen) and grandchildren who visit our town, a play area would have been a nice addition. Add a beautiful, shaded picnic  area, some horseshoe pits, and whatever else the townsfolk would have liked, and we would have had an attraction bordering the Trans-Canada Highway, no doubt bringing in traffic and a little bit of economic input.

I believed in the park. I still do; but the people have spoken, and I have moved on and begun the Walhachin Museum/Community Hall project with the help of a couple of local contractors, along with a couple of other projects.

However, I must say that a lot of misinformation circulated throughout the community: some of it on Facebook and other social media, some of it via phone calls or knocking on doors.

Regardless, the democratic process unfolds in many different ways (ask Stephen Harper), and we accept the results and move on, whatever the outcome. I have done this.

Let me repeat, for the record, that despite the rumours being spread by folks who haven’t taken one minute to just call and ask me: I will not—I repeat, I will not—bring the park forward anytime in the foreseeable future. I have a number of projects on the go, and my focus will be on seeing them through to completion.

Steve Rice

Director, TNRD Area “I”

Spences Bridge











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