This will be the second time this year that the community of Wilkie will be putting one of their recreational facilities in the national spotlight.
Wilkie was able to make it into the top 10 communities for the Hockeyville 2017 campaign this past winter. The town won $25,000 in arena upgrades, which will be used in their ongoing rink rebuild.
With such a tremendous amount of support for Hockeyville, they decided why not try to garner support for a different recreational facility. Wilkie residents are nominating the town's pool into the Project Play Competition. The Project Play Competition awards $250,000 to one community's recreational facility upgrade. The three runner-up finalists will also receive $20,000 in prize money.
Helen Urlacher, who started the nomination process, said they are a little late to the competition but she believes they can pull it off, "The campaign started July 7th, so we are kind of late but better late than never. I know the community rallied together quite well during Hockeyville so I know we can try and do this again."
The pool, which was built in 1974, has acquired some wear and tear over the years. "Our pool is in desperate need of upgrading." Urlacher said if they were to win any prize money in the competition, they would consider enclosing the pool, "The town of Wilkie could then use it all year round. A lot of people in town go elsewhere in the winter for swimming and swimming lessons. Enclosing the pool would not only generate jobs but also generate revenue for the town on a year round basis."
Just this past Wednesday, Wilkie hosted their annual Pool Fun Day. Urlacher said they had a 'Project Play selfie station' and were bringing people's attention to the contest. "It kind of worked out, we just started this campaign and then they had their fun day. So lots of people came out and were supporting us."
Urlacher said the pool has already seen so much support, "The support from the surrounding areas and community are wonderful. We do appreciate it and we are just crossing our fingers and giving it a try."
Nominations close on August 18th, meaning Wilkie has just under a week to get their votes in. The top four towns will then be announced on September 4th.