Winter Classic celebration for Iroquois Outdoor Rink

South Dundas Winter Classic 2022 edition – What’s the best way to acknowledge and celebrate the donation of a community building? When that community building is an outdoor rink facility the answer is obvious – host a hockey game. Sunday (February 6) following the official dedication of the Iroquois Outdoor Rink building and acknowledgement of project contributors a number of U9 South Dundas Lions took to the ice for the 2022 South Dundas Winter Classic. The teams enjoyed a couple of hours of shinny in front of those who made this project a reality, parents and area residents. (The Leader/Comfort photos)

MORRISBURG – The traditional term for an outdoor rink building is a ‘rink shack’ but South Dundas mayor Steven Byvelds pointed out that this Iroquois outdoor rink building is definitely not a shack.

Clean, bright and functional the Iroquois Outdoor Rink Building project was made possible by an idea sparked by Swank Construction and contributions from a number of local businesses, organizations and individuals.

Sunday, February 6th many of those contributors and local dignitaries gathered for the delayed dedication and official opening of the building. Completed in late 2020, the official dedication and plaque unveiling inside the building was finally able to take place.

Non-stop, end-to-end hockey action during Sunday’s South Dundas Winter Classic at the Iroquois Outdoor Rink. Pictured are Nash Dempsey in the yellow and Blake Sears on the right. Adding to the community spirit of the occasion, Nash’s parents who own the Morrisburg Canadian Tire donated Gatorade for the players after the game. Hot Chocolate and TimBits during the event were donated by the Iroquois Tim Horton’s location.

“This certainly was a good community project. It’s good to see the community spirit,” said Byvelds. He also thanked Swanks, and everyone who contributed to this project for this efforts. “Without you we would not have what we have here today.”

Ron Swank said that when they initially heard that the old Iroquois rink building had to be closed they immediately thought that this would be a great project for Swank Construction.

“Primarily because I grew up in this town and spent numerous hours on this rink as a kid,” said Ron who added that his kids also grew up here and played on this rink and now his grandkids are playing on this rink. “It’s special for us that we are able to give something back to the community,” said Swank.

While he spearheaded the project, he said that there were many contributors who were eager to contribute to it as well including Thompson Timber Mart, Lloyd McMillan Equipment, Bill’s Towing and Recovery, Ideal Roofing, Cornwall Roof Truss, Rick McKee Painting, Merkley Energy Solutions, Gentek Windows, Stonegate Architectural Services and Locke’s Rentals and Welding.

He also acknowledged the efforts of the volunteers, especially Matt Farengruber, without whom the rink would not operate.

Iroquois Outdoor Rink plaque unveiled – Municipal officials and project contributor gathered Sundas to unveil the plaque as part of the official opening ceremonies. L-r are South Dundas councillor Archie Mellan, project contributor Bill Ewing, Councillor Donald Lewis, South Dundas mayor Steven Byvelds, and project contributors Ron Swank, Jamie Thompson, Devin Swank and Jesse Swank.

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