On a busy Saturday morning at the Bea Fisher Bottle Depot, people are unloading garbage bags full of bottles and cans and hauling fully-loaded shopping carts up the ramp to the receiving area.
The sound of clanging bottles fills the crowded depot. People are constantly coming in and out, taking numbers and waiting in line.
Keeping track of all this activity is Sherry Schneider. The Lloydminster Skating Club secretary is on-hand to manage and direct the skating club’s bottle drive fundraiser.
“We try to do this twice a year,” she said. “All fundraising events are to pay for ice time. Skater fees don’t even cover half of it.”
Schneider has commandeered two of the bottle depot’s six available lines to allow for members and their parents to hand in their recyclables. She says that it costs over $10,000 each month for the club to rent ice time, totaling more than $70,000 for the season.
The Lloydminster Skating Club holds a number of fundraising events like the bottle drive throughout the year to help insure that their over 130 members have a place to skate.
“We just had a duelling pianos fundraiser in November where two guys came in and played pianos against each other,” she said. “When you sign up your kid there are volunteering requirements. The bottle drive is one of them.”
Members who were unable to participate in the drive were asked to raise at least $200 for the club by other means.
“Because of weather we’re allowing skaters to collect from family and friends,” Schneider said. “We don’t want children going door-to-door because it’s cold outside.”
Amanda Fittgau is waiting in line with two heaping shopping carts and a truck full of cans and bottles sitting outside. Her 3-year-old son Ethan is a member of the club and this is her first time taking part in the bottle drive.
“It’s definitely for a good cause,” she said. “It keeps the kids busy and it keeps the parents busy.”
Also waiting in line is Surbhi Parashar. She has two children in the club and this is her first time at the bottle drive as well.
“I think it’s good, helping contribute to the community and helping raise money for the skating club,” she said.
The Lloydminster Skating Club has an account at the Bea Fisher Bottle Depot, and anyone is welcome to hand in their bottles and cans in their name.
“If you want to drop off bottles you can tell them to put the money towards the skating club account,” Schneider said. “It would be greatly appreciated.”