East Hants Municipality Purchases East Hants Sportsplex

(Elmsdale, NS, July 20, 2021) – The East Hants Municipality and the East Hants Arena Association (EHAA) have forged a new partnership for the sustainability of the East Hants Sportsplex in Lantz.

At its Council policy meeting on July 20, East Hants municipal council approved the purchase of the East Hants Sportsplex in Lantz, NS for $2.3 million. EHAA will continue to operate the Sportsplex as an agent of the municipality through a Facility Management Agreement.

“Times have been tough for the Sportsplex and facilities like it because of COVID-19,” says Eleanor Roulston, warden of the Municipality of East Hants. “This partnership secures the future of the facility as a community asset and ensures its financial security in the months and years ahead.”

In December 2020, EHAA approached the municipality to provide emergency funding to continue the operation of the Sportsplex. COVID-19, the earlier collapse of the Dome, the cancellation of fundraising initiatives due to COVID-19 shutdowns, and cancelled bookings had a significant impact on the operation and financial status of the Sportsplex.

In early 2021, EHAA and the municipality began discussions on a new owner-operator model for the Sportsplex. This model is common across other facilities in the country and EHAA will continue to operate the facility day-to-day through fundraising, rental revenue, and other programs.

“We think this is the best possible outcome for the Sportsplex,” says Bill Falkenberg, president of EHAA. “Our volunteer group has been dedicated to this facility for a long time and we’ve worked extremely hard alongside the Sportsplex employees to deliver excellent service to the community. We’re proud of what we’ve built together.”

This change in ownership of the building will not have any noticeable impact on users or programs, and it will allow EHAA to continue operating the facility.

-30-

About East Hants

East Hants is a vibrant, welcoming community that embraces rural and urban living – a place where everyone feels connected. East Hants cares about people and their quality of life. Through program and service excellence, the municipality is building a strong, thriving community

About the East Hants Arena Association

The East Hants Arena Association is a not-for-profit volunteer group of citizens from East Hants, first formed in the 1940s to offer the community a recreation facility. Age and deficiencies in the original arena (The Barn) created a need for a new and updated arena and, in 1993, the Keith Miller Arena opened. Demand and growth warranted further expansion by the late 2000s and in 2011 the current facility with two full-size ice surfaces and an indoor field house (Dome) opened. This $19-million expansion was funded by three levels of government, community fundraising, and financing provided by BMO. Until 2020, EHAA has operated annually without any significant financial subsidies, made possible by a revenue model that includes ongoing fundraising (TV Bingo, golf tournament), facility advertising, and a diverse base of over 100 user groups.

Contact:

Jody MacArthur
Manager of Communications
Municipality of East Hants
jmacarthur@easthants.ca
902-883-6219

Bill Falkenberg
Chair, East Hants Arena Association
billfalk@eastlink.ca