The Moose Lake Watershed Society wants the Alberta government to create a provincial park and recreation area on the west side of Moose Lake and is holding an open house at the Shaw House on Friday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. to share its vision.
The land the proposed park and recreation area would encompass totals 13 sections of Crown property and would start where Thin Lake River enters Moose Lake and go southeast to Eastbourne Hall. The recreational area of the proposal would preserve current uses such as quadding and berry picking. The provincial park area would protect the shoreline and wildlife habitat.
The Moose Lake Watershed Society hopes to balance the developments along the lake with a protected area. The presentation from the society will start at 7 p.m., but the open house will provide information on a come and go basis. The open house gives an opportunity to stakeholders to hear about the proposal as well as to raise any concerns.
"It's a good opportunity for people to come out and get to talk to people about this, and of course for us to get their opinions as well," said Kay Lee Kinch, secretary-treasurer for the society.
The park would aim to provide protection for fish habitat as well as the jack pine forest. "A lot of the spawning grounds has been impacted by the development," said Kinch. "It's kind of critical to protect that." She said the area also has historical and cultural aspects the society wants to preserve.
Kinch said because 73 per cent of the shoreline is developed already, lake users should come to the open house to discuss Moose Lake's future. The Watershed Society is in its third year of working on the proposal.
"One of the few economic development benefits we get is tourism, so if any of these parks that draw more people to the area then it's great," said Reeve Ed Rondeau.
"I think it will be good for the area," said Genia Leskiw, MLA for Bonnyville-Cold Lake. "Any area that we have that can be protected and have controlled use of is a good thing."
"It serves its purpose for not only for protecting the area but also for providing the beauty for people who use it," Leskiw said.
The society will forward the proposal to Alberta Parks after the open house.