INUVIK


The newest vacation hot spot in the North could very well become Inuvik.

On April 2, the Inuvik Family Centre will officially open its doors to the 7,000 area residents who are looking for a chance to frolic in the leisure/lifestyle pool with a swirl pool and lazy river.

It looks a lot like the new pool in Whitehorse, partly because the same architects designed it. But, as Mayor Peter Clarkson points out, its water slide will be seven metres longer.

Literally, the new facility will be a “hot spot” because it also boasts of a steam room, sauna and hot tub.

There will also be two squash courts, change rooms, a kids play zone with a climbing play structure, a birthday room and snack bar.

The theme throughout the facility will be “Tropical Paradise” with murals and palm trees added for decoration.

The Inuvik Family Centre has been added to the Midnight Sun Recreation Complex that already offers curling, skating, community hall, fitness centre, curling lounge and meeting rooms.

The addition adds six to seven pool staff and two full-time gate keepers and one part-time gate keeper.

Clarkson says it will be the first, year-round facility of its kind north of the Arctic Circle in Canada.

And he says it is not to luxurious for the 3,500 residents of Inuvik and the other 3,500 people living in neighbouring communities.

“We have long winters,” he says. “Why should the kids in Inuvik not have what the kids in Whitehorse have.

“It’ll get enough use and, besides, it’s what the community wanted … we had a plebiscite.

“It’s much better for a community to be spending money on recreation and a healthy lifestyle than on correctional facilities.

“It’s pro-active,” he says.

“Once it’s open, people will wonder how we ever did without it.”

But then Clarkson had a confession: “I’ve been working on it day and night for four years … so I’m biased.”