Friends of Ellenwood Park are the recipient of the 2012 Doctors Nova Scotia Strive Award and a $5,000 grant.
Friends of Ellenwood Park have received a Strive award from Doctors Nova Scotia and a $5,000 grant.Carla Allen photo
The committee has been promoting and managing off-season recreation at Ellenwood Provincial Park as a way to increase and promote healthy lifestyles for the community.
Stephen Sollows, spokesperson for the group, says they are very pleased to have been selected as the winner of the award.
And although the park is gearing up for another summer season, Friends of Ellenwood Park are already setting their sights ahead to this winter.
“The $5,000 funding grant will be used to help purchase a new ski groomer and tracksetter as well as cross-country ski and snow shoeing equipment for use at the park,” he said.
“This will make a difference in the quality and safety of ski conditions at the park. Perhaps more importantly though, are the health benefits provided, as people of all ages are enticed to come out and try these winter activities.
“Our aim is to have equipment available at the park cabin so that anyone will be able to come out and try skiing or snow shoeing,” he said.
The Strive Award recipient receives the $5,000 grant to spend on advancing health promotion initiatives, a plaque for their community, and a feature on doctorsNS.com and in the official magazine of Doctors Nova Scotia.
The award is one way in which the physicians of Nova Scotia support the work being done across the province to promote healthy lifestyles.
Friends of Ellenwood Park were selected for the 2012 Strive Award from over 33 other community groups.
Usage of the park has increased noticeably in the last two years and it is becoming well known to residents in Yarmouth, Digby and Shelburne counties.
All activities organized by the committee are free of charge. The group has created a brochure that includes information regarding park usage for cross-country skiing. Starting in October the cabin is open every Sunday from 12-4p.m., supervised by a volunteer.
A heated cabin on the property is utilized as a warm spot for snacks and hot drinks.
There were 629 visitors who signed into the park in 2009/2010 from December to March and 642 people in 2010/2011 over the same time period.
In the past six years there have been six ski clinics for novice to intermediate skiers. There have also been six family fun days.
In 2011 there have been several special events at the park including a brunch, geocaching, photography, drumming and pumpkin carving and a lunch in November that 33 attended.
The organization feels the park could be a venue for upcoming events like senior games and the 2013 Winter Special Olympics.