This was supposed to be a banner year for the Mann Park Lawn Bowling Club, as they made plans to celebrate its history and mark 60 years in White Rock.
All those plans changed, of course, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Bowling was quickly cancelled and special events were put on hold back in March as local residents and the rest of the province quarantined at home for the next few months.
However, the club, located at 14560 North Bluff Rd. in Centennial Park, decided to make the most of a tough situation and move ahead with some long-planned and much-need renovations to what a news release called “the perimeter surrounding the green.”
The project has been ongoing; cement was poured on Tuesday (July 21), club secretary Martha McArthur told Peace Arch News.
“This is certainly not the year we had anticipated,” said club president David Tones.
“However, with all the regular club activities either cancelled or postponed, the time was right to proceed with long-awaited repairs.”
Funding for the project came through club fundraising, “generous” financial support from the City of White Rock and a New Horizons for Seniors federal grant, the club noted.
While club improvements are underway, Mann Park members got more good news last month, when the club re-opened with “regulated bowling” as per the Bowls BC Phase 1 return-to-play plan. The new protocols include only limited practice and coaching with a restricted number of bowlers on the green at a given time.
According to the news release, plans are underway to advance to Phase 2 of the plan, which would permit club members to participate in games with each other. A limited number of spectators would also be allowed.
“Club members hope to be able to enjoy a more normal bowling schedule later this summer and look forward to doing so in the newly repaired and safer facility,” the release notes.