Brett Kirkpatrick

Brett Kirkpatrick

Funtastic swings up support

Ten local sports organizations are receiving $30,000 in total grant funding

Once it’s open and ready for business, the Vernon Amateur Athletic Association (AAA) Track Club is going to need some equipment to use at the new athletic park at Okanagan College.

Thanks to the Vernon and District Funtastic Sports Society, the club will receive $5,000 through the Funtastic Community Investment Grants to purchase pole vault equipment.

The track club was one of 10 local sports organizations receiving $30,000 in total grant funding from Funtastic which will be used by the organizations for equipment and upgrades.

“The pole vault equipment is necessary for the new facility being built up on the hill,” said Ian Cameron, club coach. “One of the great things about that facility is how much working together went into it, especially with the track. It’s going to allow all kinds of sports to be played there.

“We are very grateful to Funtastic for this funding.”

Grants were handed out by Funtastic directors Tuesday at the VantageOne Indoor Centre.

The Funtastic Sports and Music Festival runs on the Canada Day long weekend in Vernon, Armstrong and Enderby, and has done so for the past 31 years.

The event brings thousands of people to the North Okanagan.

“It’s the largest softball tournament in Canada,” said Funtastic president Brett Kirkpatrick. “We have the opportunity to be able to give back some money to the community. Over the last 31 years, we’ve given back about $1.6 million.”

This is the seventh year of the community investment grant program. Chairperson Steve Cousins said, with Tuesday’s cheques for $30,000, the program has awarded organizations just shy of $190,000.

“We had 25 applications from various organizations this year, totalling more than $132,000 in requests,” said Cousins.

The track club and Vernon and District Baseball Association each received cheques for $5,000. Baseball will use its funds to upgrade its batting cage at the diamonds at Marshall Field.

Also receiving Funtastic grants:

North Valley Gymnastics Society (single bar apparatus), $4,300;

Vernon BMX (new starting gate), $3,200;

BrainTrust Canada Association, (helmet safety program), $3,000;

Sky Volleyball Club (equipment), $2,650;

North Okanagan Therapeutic Riding Association (riding arena upgrade), $2,200;

Vernon Lawn Bowling Club (defibrilator), $2,010;

Allan Brooks Nature Centre Society (nature play area), $1,600;

Canadian Mental Health Association (snowshoe program), $1,040.

Information on the community investment grants, applications and criteria can be found on the Funtastic website,