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Pow Wow Hut on Lac La Biche Recreation Grounds removed

Long-standing building removed as new $7.5 million project moves forward

LAC LA BICHE - It has been a fixture of the Lac La Biche Recreation Grounds for decades, but this week, the wooden Pow Wow Hut is being disassembled and removed from the site as work proceeds on the $7.5 million upgrade to the area. 

The hut was one of three structures that made up the former multicultural centre, which dates back to the early 1980s. The wooden hut, a concession and multicultural building, as well as the farmer’s market pavilion, all helped to compliment activities in and around the recreation grounds. The amenities were used for dozens of Pow Wow Days event, community celebrations and sporting events.  

The Pow Wow Hut was owned by the Lac La Biche Pow Wow Days and Fish Derby Association for most of its working history but was sold in recent years to local resident. The owner is now dismantling the building and getting it ready to move from the property. 

Darrell Lessmeister, the associate CAO for Lac La Biche County Recreation and Community Services said the hut should be removed from the site very soon.    

“We’re hoping by the end of the week it’ll be gone,” he said on May 15, adding that it was always intended to be removed.  

According to Lessmeister, the hut is a kit building that was set up on the site, assembled, and used for Pow Wow Days and other events. When the Pow Wow Days Association no longer wanted the building, they put out offers for people to take it. 

Over the past decade or so, there has been very little use of the Pow Wow hut, which Lessmeister says has a broken window and is in some disrepair.  

“I don’t know if there’s been a lot of use of that building at all,” he said.  

While the building has been a fixture of downtown Lac La Biche for several decades, Lessmeister says it has no historical protection.  

“It has no historical significance whatsoever,” he said.  

Last October, the concession and community building were torn down as part of the first phase of the McArthur Park Redevelopment Plan. The same plan saw the removal of the historic Main 1 baseball diamond and two other slopitch diamonds from the grounds over the last few years. The plan will see the diamonds and buildings replaced with open green space, walking trails, a skate park, a community ‘town square,’ a bike track and parking. 

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