It was much welcomed news for the Bentley Museum.
On May 17, on his way back to Edmonton from another meeting, David Dorward, MLA for Edmonton-Gold Bar, met museum chairperson Ralph Scarlett and dropped off a provincial Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP) cheque of just over $17,300.
The museum had applied for the grant back in September. It was especially significant as this is the last time for this grant. The program has been phased out.
Scarlett gave Dorward a short impromptu tour that impressed Dorward seemed impressed. He relived some of his childhood memories and was surprised no admission is ever charged at the rural museum. He was fascinated to find an actual “strap” on the teacher’s old school desk and took special note of the area of the old general store in the museum’s agriculture building.
He also mentioned that this area has a really good bunch of volunteers — a hard working bunch of volunteers.
On his way back to Edmonton from a Stettler meeting, Dorward had made time for a quick tour in central Alberta delivering and presenting cheques. He stopped at Sundre, Eckville, Bentley and Rimbey.
After applying in 2009, the museum received $45,000 in CFEP funding from lottery funds in 2010 to help with the actual construction of the memorial building. Construction took place in 2011. The latest funding is to help finish off the display area inside with formal display cases and dividers the museum does not have.
“It will go a long ways towards helping (with funds) until we have a casino in 2015,” said Scarlett.
Funding is hard to secure for smaller rural facilities as there is just not the area/companies to call on.