The approximate route for the planned Forrest Field fitness trail. (Google photo)

Ladysmith a stride closer to fitness trail

Work could get underway on initial groundwork this spring

Gerry Beltgens Special to the Chronicle

Crushed gravel could be down for a fitness trail around Ladysmith’s Forrest Field as soon as this spring.

Supporters met recently to mark another step toward that goal with the donation of $1,000 from Island Savings.

Representatives of five service clubs involved in the Forrest Field Fitness Trail Committee were on hand as Brad Lesiuk, personal banking manager for Island Savings in Coronation Mall handed over the cheque made available due to a partnership with First West Credit Unions. The money will go towards the first stages of the one-kilometre trail.

Added to the nearly $5,000 the committee raised at the Oktoberfest in 2018 and work can begin on the path which will eventually encircle the Forrest Field complex and feature a number of workout stations.

Lesiuk has lived in the Cowichan Valley for 41 years. He coaches hockey and has seen the benefits provided by the Cowichan Sportsplex providing alternatives to screen time and staying indoors. He would love to work with the community to enhance access to similar facilities.

Four members of the local Island Savings staff have children who use sports and fitness facilities in Ladysmith. Jamie Pakos coaches baseball and soccer. He is looking forward to using the new trail.

The trail will circle around Forrest Field and the balance of the Lot 108 property designated for future sports fields and related amenities. The goal is to have the trail roughed in by April 2019 and have a community volunteer day to spread and rake the final crushed gravel surface in May.

The next stage will be to build outdoor fitness stations. The Rotary Club has applied for a gaming grant to help with the equipment and materials cost.

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