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VIDEO: Central Park Arena Canteen Project

In 2020, the Ontario Trillium Foundation approved a three-year grant to create a Canteen at Central park Arena as well as delivering a project that provides culinary employment skills for youth leading to greater financial independence. A press conference was held on Saturday March 18th to celebrate the project and talk about future goals.

Simcoe-Grey MPP Brian Saunderson talked about the success of the program and how it has helped individuals learn new skills in their chosen profession. “We are here today to celebrate two Ontario Trillium Foundation grants. The $308,700 Grow Grant allowed for upgrades to be made to the kitchen area of the Central Park arena which in turn helped create an amazing culinary program.”

Above left-to-right: Simcoe-Grey MPP Brian Saunderson, Environment Network Executive Director Kerri MacDonald, Collingwood Deputy Mayor Tim Fryer, spoke about the program and the value it represents not only to the participants but to the community.

Skylar Fulmer (pictured above) is a chef and Program Facilitator. “I have worked at restaurants in this area and in Toronto but this is my dream job” Fulmer said. The six week program is geared toward helping youth learn new cooking skills and to prepare them for real time “hands on” kitchen experience. “We go from the fundamentals of culinary from flavour profiles up to creating your own dish. The program has been really popular and participants gain confidence as they go through. It’s amazing to see their creativity bloom” Fulmer added.

Skylar Fulmer invites you to try the Pineapple Mango Salsa, made and bottled at the arena canteen. Fulmer says ingredients used in menu items are sourced locally.

In 2020, The Environment Network received a three-year, $308,700 Grow Grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to upgrade the Collingwood Central Park Arena canteen allowing for the delivery of a culinary social enterprise initiative in collaboration with the Collingwood Youth Centre. The program provided valuable employment skills for youth to assist them to learn important culinary and business skills that will benefit them in future employment opportunities and achieve greater financial independence.  

Enhancing people’s economic wellbeing, this initiative has had an impact on the lives of 120 people in the community. 

Upgrades to the Central Park Arena canteen included fire suppression system, venting, an oven with flat top, a dual fryer and hot plates.

The Environment Network also received a second grant of just under one hundred thousand dollars to purchase additional equipment for the program from the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Resilient Communities Fund program. Proceeds from food sales go back into the program. 

Environment Network Executive Director Kerri MacDonald with Simcoe-Grey MPP Brian Saunderson

Skyler Fulmer, MPP Brian Saunderson, Kerri MacDonald

(left-to-right) Kneeling in the front row: Collingwood Deputy Mayor Tim Fryer, Collingwood Councillor Steve Perry.
Back row: Councillor Chris Potts, Skylar Fulmer, MPP Brian Saunderson, Environment Network Executive Director Kerri MacDonald, Maxine Binder, Councillor Kathy Jeffery, Councillor Rob Ring.

Visit the Collingwood Environment Network Online