A ski hill project in Saskatoon could get a big boost from a national competition.
The Optimist Hill campaign is one of four finalists in the Kraft-Heinz Project Play competition, which provides $250,000 to a community for a sports facility upgrade.
Optimist Hill is hoping to get the funds to put them over the top of their $1.9-million fundraising goal to raise the current hill at Diefenbaker Park by 30 feet, as well as installing a ski lift.
“This will put shovel to the ground (if we win),” Optimist Hill Campaign Co-Chair Joe Vant Hof told 650 CKOM.
He said the campaign found out they were part of the final four during the CFL on TSN broadcast on Monday night.
“We were absolutely thrilled,” he said. “You just can’t believe that nationally the project is being recognized.”
Online voting will begin nationwide on Sept. 8 and run through Sept. 9 on the Project Play website, with the winner to be announced on TSN Sept. 16.
Optimist Hill is up against a swimming pool in Bible Hill, N.S., a football stadium in Brandon, Man. and a recreational park in Goderich, Ont.
Vant Hof said the plan is to get people with laptops, tablets and phones to vote as much as possible, adding they’ll be doing a blitz in the downtown core to make people aware.
“This is a showcase opportunity to tell the rest of Canada why Saskatoon is such a great place to be,” he said.
If it doesn’t win the competition, the hill will still get $20,000 as a final four candidate.
The Optimist Hill campaign is also working to raise an additional $5 million to build a 4,000 square foot chalet at the site, which would store rental equipment and have heated washrooms and activity space.