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Whistler BMX ramps up fundraising efforts

Group says getting track built is an urgent matter



Whistler BMX's goal is to get its BMX and pump tracks at Bayly Park built before the snow falls.

But in a recent interview, organizers of Whistler BMX (WBMX) stressed how falling short could create an unfortunate ripple effect.

Fundraising coordinator Cathy Zeglinski explained if the track isn't built by mid-October, it will affect the club's ability to organize its programming for next summer, as efforts will have to be reinvested into getting the track built.

"There's this window right now where if we don't get it done, we can't organize," she said. "All winter, these things can be organized if the track's built. If the track's not built, we'll still be in the process of getting the track built. There's a real time-sensitivity right now.

"If we don't get it built now, we're delaying it by months and months."

Zeglinski spoke at a crowdfunding video shoot at Nita Lake Lodge on Sept. 23. The club filmed interviews with track proponents to create a clip that is expected to be released later this week.

She said the club needs to raise roughly $20,000 in the next few weeks to make fall construction a reality. Large in-kind donations like the start gate from the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation and trucking services have significantly shortened the needed financial goalposts, getting the cash flow going has been a challenge.

"We need $25,000 in the bank before we start cutting holes," said WBMX founding member Brian Finestone.

Added Zeglinski: "We're partly there."

Should the club raise funds above and beyond that $25,000, they can still put it to use paving the corners of the BMX track. The pump track will be paved as part of the original project.

"If you can (pave the BMX track corners) right off the bat, that's great because it's less maintenance, less dust, a number of different things," Finestone said.

Money aside, the timeline has had some adjustments associated with building on top of an old landfill, as designers must consider such things as not overloading weight onto the membrane separating the landfill and the track as well as avoiding the methane ports.

"Once we're signed off and ready to do the construction, it will literally be a one-week to 10-day affair. Two weeks if you start looking at landscaping," Finestone said. "The construction process is not arduous."

Those interested in donating can do so online at, by sending an email transfer to or dropping off a cheque to Zeglinski at Northlands Medical Clinic. Zeglinski said the campaign is not accepting cash in order to keep a transparent paper trail for all donations. Tax receipts are available through the National Sport Trust Fund.

Zeglinski credited Dan Harmon, Jody Hallett, Amanda Sin and Lula Darquier for also playing major roles in the fundraising process.

As well, the club is hosting a fundraiser at Creekbread on Oct. 22.

"Creekbread is a gathering of the tribe. We're hoping that by the time we have Creekbread, we're really getting that swell of momentum," Zeglinski said.

The track project is still subject to Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) approval.

"We are waiting for a third party engineering report and recommendations and subsequent review and approval by the RMOW's Infrastructure Services department. The engineering work is required as the proposed track site sits overtop the former municipal landfill, which has a subsurface membrane. The membrane is integral to the landfill's methane gas collection and venting system," RMOW spokesperson Claire Piech explained in an email.

In a follow-up, the RMOW noted: "Staff expect to receive a draft report from the engineer within the next few weeks."

As well, Zeglinski noted the track is planning to add parking on Jane Lakes Road in order to keep attendees from gobbling up spaces for local residents and businesses. Piech noted there is "potential to create further spaces just off Jane Lakes Road underneath the BC Hydro transmission lines." She noted the parking spaces are not part of the approval process for the track.


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