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Elk Village hosts fundraiser for bike park

Cyclists attend a fundraising event for the JPCA’s bike park at Elk Village Restaurant on June 11. | Supplied photo

Jason Stockfish | advertising@fitzhugh.ca

Hundreds of locals made their way to Elk Village Restaurant on June 11 in support of the construction of a new bike park in Jasper.

Under sunny skies, over 200 people attended a fundraiser hosted by the local eatery to raise money for the Jasper Park Cycling Association, which is in the process of building a bike park at the west end of Connaught Drive.

The restaurant and the JPCA are no strangers to one another, explained Enrique Alonso, owner of Elk Village.

Throughout the summer, Elk Village, which is located at Jasper House Bungalows on Highway 93, hosts Thursday night road rides for JPCA members who pit stop at the restaurant for fine food and cold beverages as their evening ride makes its way back to town.

“Enrique and I were talking one day about hosting a fundraiser for the JPCA,” said Pat Mroczek, restaurant manager.

“We’re both huge into the biking community in Jasper,” Alonso added.

“We really wanted to do something for the community and for the bike park to make sure it works out for them.”

Alonso noted how Mroczek organized most of the event, taking the initiative to contact local businesses for donations for the silent auction and raffle.

Mroczek said that he received the support of nearly 20 local businesses who donated gifts and prizes to help raise money for the bike park.

Between food sales, a silent auction and the raffle, fundraising efforts netted around $3,000 in support of the JPCA’s project. 

“The locals were amazing. They were there all day,” Alonso said.

Staff were running constantly serving drinks and food while volunteers ensured funds were being raised and the crowd was entertained. 

“Without the volunteers putting in long shifts selling tickets, we couldn’t have made it work,” Alonso said.

DJ Kenny “K-Train” Trainor donated his time and equipment to provide entertainment for the hundreds of people that showed up throughout the day.

Children were running, biking and playing on the grounds of the bungalows, as adults mingled and raised money for a community-building and community-built initiative. 

“I was surprised with how much support we got,” Alonso said.

“I knew we were going to be busy but I was not expecting all the people that showed up.”

Additional support from management and staff at Jasper House Bungalows was integral to the success as well, he added.

Manu Loir-Mongazon, president of the JPCA, expressed his and the association’s gratitude for the time and effort the organizers and volunteers put into making the event a success.

“We are super, super thankful for all of (Elk Village’s) hard work,” Loir-Mongazon said.

“If every restaurant was doing one event like that, oh my, the bike park would already be financed and built.” 

Plans are in the works for Elk Village to host another fundraiser later in the summer.

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