The Medicine Lodge Ski Hill Masterplan was approved by Bentley Mayor and Council on July 11, 2023. In addition it was presented to Lacombe County Council on September 14, 2023 as information.
The plan is intended as a starting point to continue meaningful conversation, provide guidance and a prioritized approach to ensure long term asset management, look to the possibility of recreation expansion and develop future partnerships. It should be noted we continue to work to develop our relationships with our indigenous partners through Treaty 6 and Metis Region 3 to identify and work collaboratively to protect any culturally significant sites that may exist around the hill.
In the last 4 years the Town has been approached on multiple occasions from investors, recreational user groups, indigenous organizations and general stakeholders regarding a variety of topics from mountain biking, ensuring that the hill is preserved for long term community based recreation, protection of potential culturally significant sites and flora and fauna and expansion of community based recreation. It became clear that there needed to be a formal documented process that engaged a variety of stakeholders including: adjacent landowners, medicine lodge ski club board and members, residents of both the county and the town, indigenous stakeholders and various recreation based clubs.
The project was funded via a partnership with Central Alberta Economic Partnership (who successfully applied for a grant through the Tourism Relief Fund), financial contribution from Lacombe County and a further financial contribution approved by Mayor and Council of the Town of Bentley. It involved extensive engagement throughout February 2023 to March 31, 2023 and a total of 360 survey responses were obtained through a general public Survey. In addition there were separate engagements with: the medicine lodge ski hill board, adjacent land owners, an advertised public open house, indigenous stakeholders, and the mountain bike community.
The plan takes into consideration the multiple opinions, concerns, suggestions and ideas that were provided through that engagement process and provides recommendations for the future, that preserves the existing use and acknowledges the hard work of the volunteers who have operated the hill since the 1950’s. In addition we recognize that the hill is culturally significant to indigenous peoples of Alberta and also to those who have called central Alberta Home for multiple generations. We hope that this document will continue to:
- move the conversation forward
- assist the Medicine Lodge Ski Hill to obtain future funding to help maintain existing assets
- create an area for community based recreation that can be enjoyed by everyone
- manage future development in a respectful and collaborative way for many generations to come
For further information or questions please contact the Town of Bentley at (403)-748-4044 or email email@example.com