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Capital Campaign

Grand Opening

This past Saturday, October 13th, our wonderful community held the Grand Opening of our brand new Knelsen Center. It was a great turn out for the community. Many people from around the community showed up which was great, as it showed how supportive and great our community and surrounding area is. This past weekend there were lots of tables set up for our dinner with plenty of room for dancing and food tables. With this being the first formal event it was a great success and shows how many more events are going to happen in the future. Supper was done by Corinne’s Catering which was once again amazing food and the buffalo was donated by the Binns family. Prayer was led by Jeff Warkentin, and tables were called up and the eager hungry guests couldn’t wait for their food.

There was many special guests in attendance. MP Chris Warkentin, Minister Margaret McQuaig- Boyd, MLA Todd Loewen, Reeve Leanne Beaupre, Deputy Reeve Ross Sutherland, Councillor of Division 1, Harold Bulford and Councillor Tom Burton (M.D. of Greenview).  After supper was finished they began their speeches which were by Chris Warkentin, Todd Loewen, Minister McCuaig Loyd, Reeve Leanne Beaupre, Building Project Chair Rick Friesen, and Capital Campaign Manager Laura LaValley. We thank everyone who came out and supported our community.

It is with great anticipation and excitement that the Bezanson Agricultural Society is announcing the Grand Opening to their recently completed project – the new Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre which is officially known as the Knelsen Centre!

Photo Cred: Facebook

In our new centre there are two fixed basketball nets and two portable ones, hockey equipment, pickleball equipment, dodgeball and volleyball equipment. Many people in our community will enjoy all of these new activities available to us. There are men and women’s washrooms with change rooms and showers for each. There are two offices and a reception area in the lobby along with a donor wall, historical wall, and a tv for displaying community news and events. The new centre also has a new accessibility lift, this allows access for all abilities to go between the existing Memorial Hall as well as the Knelsen Centre. Many thanks are given to the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie and the West Smoky Legion #244 for their $19,000 contribution which fully funded this important piece for our community.

A few words from young members of our community.

“It’s good the food was really good the music is nice this is really great, it’s cool seeing it put all together and done because I’ve been watching it be put together, seeing how big and it’s really great to see, especially with such a big turn out it’s really great for our community and proves how great we are”- Eden Hatch.

“I think it’s kinda surprising to have such a great centre like this is a small town. I feel like we are setting a good example to other small towns” -Sierra LaValley.

“I am so happy to live in Bezanson and be apart of the community. I am definitely looking forward to the future events in this new facility and playing sports in such a great building” -Laurel Van der Giessen.

Written by Netisha Zacharias

Bezanson Community Centre: New Beginnings

Photo Credit: Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre Facebook Page

In just over two weeks, the doors of the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre will officially open to the public. Now called the Knelsen Centre, thanks to a $250,000 naming rights sponsorship from Knelsen Sand & Gravel, the building will be open to the public as of the beginning of September.   Construction on the 16,000 square foot expansion to the existing Memorial Hall in Bezanson began in September 2017. The Sneak Peek on August 15 was attended by many from both the community and outside the area to view the progress to date.

For the new community centre the max occupant load is 662 people. It is an over 16,000 square foot addition including a full scale commercial kitchen and canteen, a bar, and  a regulation size gymnasium, which can double as a banquet room. We also have two fixed basketball nets and two portable ones, hockey equipment, pickleball equipment, dodgeballs, volleyball equipment. Many people in our community will enjoy all of these new activities available to us. There are men and women’s washrooms with change rooms and showers for each. There are two offices and a reception area in the lobby along with a donor wall, historical wall, and a tv for displaying community news and events.  These things haven’t actually been put up yet but will be future installations.

Photo Credit: Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre Facebook Page

The new centre also has a new accessibility lift, this allows access for all abilities to go between the existing Memorial Hall as well as the Knelsen Centre. Many thanks are given to the Rotary Club of Grande Prairie for their $19,000 contribution which fully funded this important piece for our community.

Please remember that we are not done fundraising for our new facility. If there is any way you can help there is many ways you can, our community needs you!

Family donations: Join forces with your family members and make a donation together in your family’s name.

Memorial Donations: Honor a loved one in our Centre for years to come. Leave a legacy in our community.

Community Builders Wall: Any donations over $500 will have a place on this prestigious wall of dedicated community members

Naming Rights: There are 2 sports packages and the kitchen equipment package still available.

Call Laura LaValley, Campaign Manager for further info or to donate – 780-814-3113.

Keep your calendars open for Saturday, October 13 for the Grand Opening of the new Knelson Centre. Dinner will be from 5:30 to 7:30, the grand opening will be from 7:00 to 8:00 and then there will be a dance with the Night Ryders from 9:00 to 1:00.  Tickets are now available at the office during office hours of 9 – 3 pm. $25 for the Supper & Dance & $15 per ticket for Supper or $15 for the Dance. Children 6 & Under are free.

Written By: Netisha Zacharias

100 People Challenge

Introducing the Capital Campaign Team’s “100 People Challenge”

We need 100 people to help us fund the construction of our new center!!

There are 31 days left in 2017, and we want you to be able to take advantage of the tax benefits available while helping your community. Did you know that if you make a $500 donation, that you would get half of it back if you completed your tax return by the end of April 2018?? Donate before December 31st!

Calling 100 people to fill the following spots!!
• 4 x $10,000 = $40,000
• 4 x $7,500 = $30,000
• 10 x $5,000 = $50,000
• 12 x 2,500 = $30,000
• 30 x $1000 = $30,000
• 40 x $500 = $20,000

100 people can raise $200,000 in a very short time and help our community! All donors will be recognized on the Community Builders’ Wall inside the Centre.

Please contact any of the following people if you would like to be one our “100 People”. We are ready to answer questions and make this happen! Contact us today…

Laura LaValley

Naming Rights of the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre Secured!!

November 9, 2017 – The Capital Campaign Team is pleased to announce that they have secured naming rights of the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre!

Knelsen Sand & Gravel Ltd. has committed to contribute $250,000 towards the project, including a cash portion, and gift in kind input toward the project.

Although the official name of the facility has not yet been confirmed, Knelsen Sand & Gravel Ltd. will hold the naming rights of the facility for 10 years. They will be working with our Capital Campaign Team to determine what our new Centre will be officially named, once the doors open sometime in the Summer of 2018.

Capital Campaign Manager Laura LaValley says, “This input couldn’t have come at a better time. We know our community is getting excited about the Centre, and now that it’s under construction and we can see the progress, it will be great to have a new name for the facility too!” She adds, “Knelsen’s do business in our community, and they wanted an opportunity to give back. We certainly appreciate their support in building small communities like Bezanson.”

Building Committee Chairperson, Rick Friesen shared, “This donation is huge for us. We still have work to do on the fundraising side of things, to ensure we can open the facility and have it ready to use, but this contribution is so appreciated! We are thrilled to partner with Knelsen’s to provide a quality facility for our community.”

On behalf of the Bezanson Ag. Society and the entire community of Bezanson, we want to extend heart-felt thanks to Knelsen Sand & Gravel Ltd. for their support of our project. We look forward to many great times using our new Centre! Stay tuned for further details when we unveil the official name of the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre!

Bezanson area families help build the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre!

Several Bezanson families have chosen to leave a legacy of their loved ones through contributing to the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre.

Some families in our area have selected this project at the time of their loss, while others have chosen to join together afterwards as a way of keeping the memory alive!   Each family will have a memorial plaque displayed in their loved one’s name, with their choice of wording, upon completion of the facility.

The LaValley family became “Creators” of our facility when some of the family members joined together to contribute $6,800 in memory of their mother, grandmother, and long time community member Emily LaValley.  Many thanks to the LaValley family for helping to build our community while honoring Emily!

Other families have joined together to make a family donation.   Tom & Janet Laverick along with their children and grandchildren became “Ambassadors” for our project with their joint $20,000 input towards the new Centre!  Their family legacy will be a part of our Centre for years to come!

There are many ways to help!  We are honored to have our families help with #buildingbezanson!

To find out more information about how to leave a legacy for your family, contact Laura LaValley, Capital Campaign Manager

Capital Campaign Team Seeks Naming Rights for Community Centre


Since beginning in June 2016, the Capital Campaign has been able to secure $3.6 million in contributions from corporations, individuals, families, memorial donations, and gift in kind services.

Most of the areas within the new facility have been named by local businesses. Special thanks goes out the following local supporters:

Auditorium ($100,000) – Adam Ranch & Buffalo Gravel Corp.
Lobby ($50,000) – KenCo Equipment
Kitchen ($30,000) – Margaret Friesen Professional Corporation
Bar ($30,000) – Burke Calibration
Vestibule ($10,000) – Fenton’s Greenhouse
Sports Change Rooms ($10,000) – Bezanson Legion
Bleachers ($5,000) – KMSC Law LLP

The remaining areas yet to be named include the storage room and one set of bleachers, which are both priced at $5,000 each. Further to that, the naming of the entire building is still available with a $250,000 target for 10 years naming rights.  This is the highest priced naming of our Centre because it allows the purchaser to have longevity with exclusive naming of the building, including all marketing materials, advertisements.  If you know of a company that could benefit by showcasing their business in our community, please contact Laura LaValley, Capital Campaign Manager at or 780 814 3113.

Huge Boost to Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre Project!

It’s an exciting time in Bezanson!

In January, the Bezanson Ag. Society applied for large stream funding from the Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP) with the Government of Alberta’s Culture and Tourism Department. The original ask was for $1 million and we are pleased to report we were granted $750,000!!!

This news couldn’t come at a better time! This boosts the total funds raised to over $3 million and over 80% funded! Initial cost projections of the project are $3.5 million. Now that we have a large portion of these funds secured, we were able to send the project out to tender to get firm numbers and determine just how much more our community needs to raise!

We hope to have solid numbers by the end of May.  Construction could start as early as Fall 2017! These funds help to seal the deal that this infrastructure will be a reality in Bezanson! But we still have work to do… and we need you to help us build Bezanson!

Please help us top up this funding and make this happen as soon as possible! Every dollar counts! We have many options to donate! The largest donation that we are still seeking is the naming rights of the entire building! This is targeted at a $250,000 donation for 10 years naming rights! Our Capital Campaign Team is working diligently to make connections, but if you know someone who may be interested, please let us know!

We know most of us don’t have that capacity to help, so we want to encourage you to give whatever you can! It all helps! We have monthly direct debit options, yearly contributions, and one time donations of any amount are sincerely appreciated!  We aim to be flexible in order to help you be a part of this!

Our Bezanson School students have even been hosting bake sales and contests to raise funds and we are so appreciative! We appreciate the effort, the desire to be a part of something big in our community, and the generosity, NO MATTER WHAT SIZE OF DONATION!! Let’s do this Bezanson! New beginnings are right around the corner!

If you would like to find out how you can get involved, contact Capital Campaign Manager, Laura LaValley at 780 814 3113.

Challenge Accepted!!

The Capital Campaign Team would like to invite you to join our challenge!!

How does it work?? You make a donation to the Bezanson Regional Community Cultural Centre through the link on Discover Bezanson. This method of donation is completely safe and you will still be eligible for a tax receipt if you donate more than $20.00. Please remember that your donation will go to the County of Grande Prairie as they are holding all the funds for this project in trust, and are able to issue tax receipts on behalf of this Capital Campaign.

When you make the donation, choose 5 or more people to challenge to do the same!! Post your challenge to Facebook, tagging those who have been challenged! When posting, please feel free to add our graphic “Challenge Accepted” and use hashtag #challengeaccepted

Challenge Accepted
Click the image to challenge your friends!
It is our goal to raise $10,000 on this challenge and it matters now more than ever!! We are at a stage in our fundraising that we need to determine exactly WHEN we can break ground with constructing this exciting new facility. We are urging everyone to contribute whatever they are able to by March 31, 2017, to ensure that we have as much of the funding in place as possible before making this important decision!

We boldly ask you Bezanson, please accept this challenge! Pass it on! Challenge your friends, family, co-workers, competitors, associates…anyone and everyone you can think of! There is no donation too big or too small! Join our quest to build this 16,000 square foot addition to our hall, and help build the community of Bezanson! Will you accept the challenge? Donate Now

View our video about the Capital Campaign

What are the tax implications of my donation to the Capital Campaign?

***It is recommended you speak with your accounting professionals and financial advisors to completely understand how a donation could affect your own unique situation. Also visit the CRA website for CRA’s tax savings calculator tool. Donors to this project will receive an official donation receipt from the County of Grande Prairie. ***


Donations made to registered charities, registered Canadian amateur athletic associations, Canadian municipalities, the federal government or a provincial government are eligible for a tax credit. Donations can only be claimed after they are paid— pledges don’t count. Unused claims may be carried forward for up to five years. The general annual limit on charitable donations as a percentage of net income is 75%. Donations must be supported by official donation receipts.

Generally, the federal credit is 15% on the first $200 of donations claimed in the year and 29% on the amount in excess of $200. In Alberta, the provincial tax credit is 21%. So the combined tax savings on a donation over $200 in Alberta is 50%. So if an individual made a donation of $10,000, he would save $4,950 on his personal income tax return. For 2016 a new federal tax credit rate of 33% will apply to donations above the first $200, when an individual has income over $200,000.

The 2013 federal budget introduced a new temporary First-Time Donor’s Super Credit which permits first-time donors an additional 25% federal tax credit on up to $1,000 in donations. This one-time credit may only be claimed once in the 2013 to 2017 taxation years. You are considered a “first-time donor” if neither you nor your spouse claimed a charitable donation tax credit in any of the five previous years.


Donating from a business is different for tax purposes than donations made personally. Donations are essentially an expense to the company. If a company is in a loss year, the donations are carried forward and deducted in a year where there is taxable income. For example, if a company donated $10,000, and its corporate tax rate is 13.5%, then the tax savings would be $1350.

Everett McDonald – Capital Campaign Advisor and Proven Community Leader!

Everett McDonaldBorn and raised in Crystal Creek, Everett is well known for his work in communities! He spent twenty years with the County of Grande Prairie serving his constituents as Councillor and Reeve. Everett also served one term as MLA for Grande Prairie Smoky riding.

He is a third generation farmer in the area and is excited for the opportunity to help on the fundraising team. Everett has been involved in many projects in the area such as the County Sportsplex, The Dinosaur Museum in Wembley, and numerous other county and provincial projects.

Everett and Tina have four children, seven grandchildren and continue to live and volunteer in our community.