At their regular Jan.26, 2021 County Council Meeting, Wetaskiwin County Council voted in favour of closing the Winfield arena for the remainder of the 2020/2021 season.
The Winfield Arena has been closed since late November as mandated by the Government of Alberta’s COVID-19 restrictions.
County Council has decided that it is not viable for the County to continue to maintain the ice in Winfield when there is no clear timeline for indoor recreation facilities to be allowed to reopen.
The Northern Alberta Interlock Minor Hockey League, which Winfield Minor Hockey is a part of, has cancelled the remainder of their hockey season. Hockey Alberta has also cancelled the Provincial Championships for the 2020/2021 season.
Winfield Minor Hockey Association accounted for 74 per cent of the ice rentals at the Winfield Arena.
“The COVID-19 Pandemic has created challenges for many residents and business owners in the County of Wetaskiwin, particularly in the field of recreation. Although recreation continues to be an important part of our daily lives, it is no longer financially viable for the County to continue to operate the Winfield Arena during the COVID-19 shut down,” stated Reeve Josh Bishop. “We know this will be disappointing for many families in the County, but we look forward to a safe and healthy 2021/2022 season.”
The cancellation of the remainder of the hockey season, uncertainty on the lifting of provincial COVID-19 regulations, and the expenses already incurred by the County over the last two months combined have made maintaining the ice in Winfield unsustainable for the 2020/2021 season.