Another major sporting event may be held in Grande Prairie in 2022. City Council has agreed to submit a bid to host the Arctic Winter Games in four years. Community Recreation Development Supervisor Katie Biberdorf says the Mayor first received a letter in May asking if the city would be interested in hosting.
“The Minister of Tourism sent out a request to communities that are above the 55th parallel and we were one of the communities. We think its a great opportunity for the Grande Prairie area to host an event like this.”
The games are hosted every two years in colder climates. Grande Prairie last held them in 2010. Fifteen different sports will be played over a seven day period bringing around 2000 athletes, coaches and officials to the area. Biberdorf says the next step is to actually put the bid together and submit it to the Arctic Winter Games International Committee.
“We’ll put in quite a large bid including the types of facilities, the organizations that would be involved and the volunteers…Then we go through the process with the international committee and they select the best candidate based on their criteria.”
The bid will be funded using money from the legacy fund left over from the 2010 Games. To be considered, the AWGIC looks at things like weather, available facilities and local services for visitors like hotels and transportation.
The next host city is usually announced three and a half years in advance of hosting the Games.