REPORTING · 22nd February 2011
It was an exciting kick off party at Shames Mountain as the bidding war began to get the first membership. Having membership number one is a position of prestige and they went for more than three times the opening price. In the business category, Dr. Howard Thwaites from the Kitimat Veterinary Hospital, bid up the first Business membership to $2000 from the asking price of only $599. Bruno Bellanger of Gemmaís Boutique topped the bidding for the personal/individual membership as it was rising in $200 increments, to $1000 from the asking price of $299.
Thatís the way it began, a show of support much like the Hockeyville competition.
Linda Parker explained the memberships are for a community service Co-op and are not shares, as she was accepting the cheque from Bellanger yesterday. There is a lot of interest in expanding the facilities at the Mountain and, according to the studies done, keeping this new model a membership based Co-op is the best way to facilitate the growth.
This new effort has some serious undertones. We have been informed there has been interest expressed by a Hudson Bay Mountain group to purchase Shames, which would then dismantle the chair lift and move it east. This would spell the end for the local ski community in the Terrace area.
The membership based drive is to raise 2 million dollars to not just purchase the mountain facility but to perform upgrades and provide the necessary funds to keep it running. This might seem like a lot but with a commitment to the effort from a small percentage of the local population similar to the commitment already displayed from both Kitimat and Terrace from Thwaites and Bellanger, it might be a fairly easily obtainable goal. The friends of Shames only needs another 665 teams of two to do the same thing; that is if they bought two memberships for $3000 (the total of both Thwaites and Bellangers).
The numbers are easier to obtain with more people jumping on board. Personal memberships at $299 and Business memberships at $599 calculate to finding a combination of these purchased by between 3000 and 4000 residents. This could be an easy task if the local community all got into it as they did with the Hockeyville bid, especially if the memberships were purchased at premium prices as was done this past weekend.
As Parker explained, all the funds raised will go into a trust account and held there until they raise the full amount they need. The monies would all be returned to the membership holders if the effort does not succeed. Therefore there is no apparent risk in buying in; the money is not going into operating expenses for the purchase effort. Even the City of Terrace has chipped in by supplying a building to host this effort out of. The Kwinitsa building at the corner of Eby and Highway 16 (next to the Ice cream shop) will be the headquarters for this membership drive and has been provided at no cost to the Co-op.
Darryl Tucker, Parker and Bellanger discussed the idea of constructing a display in a prominent location, much like a thermometer to demonstrate how close the team is at reaching their goal. An idea floated was something shaped like a chairlift climbing the mountain. This might just be the ideal creation mounted and displayed right in front of the Kwinitsa building at the Eby Street Highway 16 junction. It is not a hockey stick but the message is just the same.
As Gerry Martin stated at Shames this past weekend, "I believe you can do this."
And in the words of Bruce Martindale pushing the Hockeyville bid, "Whats your number?"
Dr. Howard Thwaites from the Kitimat Veterinary Hospital, bid up the first Business membership to $2000 from the asking price of only $599
Daryl Tucker, Bruno Bellanger and Linda Parker pose together marking the beginning of the fund raising drive to purchase and operate Shames Mountain
This is how easy it is, just reach for your cheque book and buy your membership.