Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley says a major refurbishment of the Wildey Gymnasium has been planned for the final quarter of this year.
The overhaul will see the introduction of an alternative energy source – the far more economical use of solar energy.
“We are very much aware that there have been challenges to your making this choice. We are sensitive to the fact, for instance, that the overall rental costs of this facility are considered challenging the high side. This has been primarily as a result of the electricity costs involved. In calculating rental costs, we have always had to bear in mind the fact that energy costs are in the vicinity of some $600 per hour,” the minister said during the launch of Fete City at the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex; an initiative which will run from May 1 to August 2014.
He told members of the cultural community, event promoters and tent managers, that the vision was to have the Gymnasium used as a venue for events of Crop Over.
“The goal is to ensure that Fête City positions the Gym as a central, easily accessible venue for activities which are held throughout the Crop Over season. Of course, the Gym is already a prominent member of the Crop Over family. In recent years, the National Cultural Foundation has found in this facility an excellent alternative to the National Stadium for the staging of the semi-finals of the
“Subsequently, the Finals of the Junior Monarch calypso competition was also staged here. So it is fitting that the Gymnasium should this year be entering into a partnership with the NCF in this Fête City initiative. I would like to invite all of you who are in one way or another involved in the production of Crop Over events, or indeed, of any other cultural events, to give priority to choosing this magnificent facility as the venue,” Lashley noted, as he stressed.