Viking Park Phase 2 Tender Awarded - Construction Commences

The Icelandic Festival of Manitoba (IFM) and the Municipality of Gimli are pleased to announce tender to build the Viking Parking Connectivity Project (Viking Park Phase 2) has been awarded to Minerva Tree Farms, Nursery & Landscaping Ltd. (Minerva). Minerva will begin construction of Viking Park Phase 2 under the leadership of HTFC Planning & Design (HTFC) in June. Work is scheduled to be completed by late summer. 

Both the IFM and the RM are pleased to have found a local landscaping firm to undertake the work. Minerva Tree Farms is owned by the Wuthrich family and has been operating in the Interlake since 1993.

Phase 2 will connect Viking Park to 1st Avenue and Centre Street, creating a parklike feel. Improvements include safer pedestrian pathways and sidewalks, street signage and street safety markings. Beautification features will reflect Gimli’s unique culture and heritage in landscaping, tree planting, park benches and in the newly constructed Timber Boardwalk. A full set of plans for the project can be viewed by contacting the IFM office. 

Donation and recognition opportunities are available at a variety of levels. All donations provide an opportunity to recognize family or bestow a dedication to a milestone in life or that of a loved one. All donations are eligible for a charitable tax receipt. 

The Breakwater Timber Boardwalk will run alongside the historic breakwater beside Betel Home to First Avenue and will be constructed with beautiful timber boards. Like the pathway stones in Viking Park, donations of $250 will enable supporters to engrave a timber board with a personal tribute that will last for generations. 

Enhancements to First Avenue are many, including planting several different disease-resistant trees like elms and hackberries. Donors can honour a loved one and invest in the environment with donations of $750 to plant a tree. Contributions will be recognized with a laser-etched aluminum plaque near a tree of the donor’s choosing.

Donors may wish to help honour the Fjallkonur, past, present and future, by making a contribution to the Fjallkona Walkway. The Fjallkonur will be represented on a Settlement Marker located near the east entrance to Viking Park and will share the story of the Fjallkona. The Festival will be inscribing the names of the past Fjallkonur on timber boards this summer and will leave room to add the names of the new Fjallkona each year.

The IFM is grateful to the Westshore Community Foundation and to the Province (Military Memorial Conservation Grant) for supporting the IFM’s efforts to make improvements to the Cenotaph. Donors can designate their contributions toward the redevelopment of this honoured space. Donations of $250 or more will be recognized by having the donor’s name inscribed on a plaque in the Cenotaph area.

The deadline date for donations is June 30, 2020 in order for recognition pieces to be installed by late summer. The IFM will continue to provide opportunities for recognition for future donations.

“It’s more important than ever to support this project. Phase 2 will improve and beautify our community and support the Icelandic Festival of Manitoba. Projects like these will also help kick-start our economy in Manitoba and in Gimli,” said Tim Arnason, Campaign Cabinet member, Viking Park.

 “By sharing your story in Viking Park Phase 2, you will become part of the rich tapestry of stories that began with the unveiling of Viking Park in August 2017. These tributes will last for generations,” said Lorna Tergesen, Campaign Cabinet member, Viking Park. 

To date over $2 million has been raised by the Viking Park Campaign Cabinet. $1.1 million was used to create Viking Park. Donations have been made by all three levels of government, corporations, foundations and private individuals. On August 9, 2017 the Government of Canada and Government of Manitoba announced that the Viking Park project was approved  under the Small Communities Fund Program, with approved federal and provincial funds of $300,000 per share for the project. The Small Communities Fund program supports priority public infrastructure projects in communities with fewer than 100,000 residents across Canada. The Municipality of Gimli matched the contributions made by the provincial and federal governments with a $300,000 investment that was announced in 2019.

A portion of the funds raised in this final phase of the legacy project will be directed toward an endowment fund for Islendingadagurinn, in order to keep the family-friendly festival low or no cost so that everyone can gather to celebrate their Icelandic heritage for generations to come.

Click for project details and donation opportunities available.