Earl and Marjorie Etsell gave Salt Lake and the surrounding few acres to the RM of Woodworth in 1982 for the community’s use.
The Salt Lake Committee was formed in 2008 to care for the lake. This summer marked the tenth year of the committee’s work so a celebration was in order. An anniversary party was held at Salt Lake on Aug. 11.
Since the committee was formed, many things have been accomplished at the lake. The beach area was cleaned up from the glass and litter that many years of neglect had left there.
Geo Tech fabric and new sand was placed in the beach area. In 2011 the lake was very low, so grants were applied for from Manitoba Hydro and the Oak Lake and Area Foundation to plant trees and shrubs along the shore line. Lots of community volunteers and the Lenore 4-H Club helped plant the trees. Things looked very green and lovely.
About four years ago the water rose to such a high level that it drowned out all the trees on the shore line. The dead trees and shrubs were removed this year and more sand was hauled in to expand the beach area.
In 2014 the board had constructed the bathroom/change room facility with the help of grants from the RM and the Oak Lake and Area Foundation. Donations from community people and from past residents of this area who enjoyed Salt Lake were used to purchase picnic tables and a bench for public use. The fire pits were also generously donated by community people.
This year the committee constructed a boat launch with the help of the Claude Tolton Memorial Fund and the RM grant money. Cochrane Stock Farms donated all the rock for this project. Each year we have a load of sand donated by Chris Routledge or Sparks Sand and Gravel.
Anyone wishing make a donation to Salt Lake can approach any Board member or Tannis Gardner, the Treasurer. The committee’s work could not continue without donations, willing volunteers and their spouses and other community people.
Committee Chairman Stan Rampton thanked all those people whose valuable donations made this possible. The Prairie Roots musical group of Henry and Nicole Wilson and Shaunna Blanchard supplied wonderful music for over 100 people who gathered on the shores of Salt Lake on Aug. 11 for the party.
Elizabeth and Robert Woods, and David Newton, his son and two grandsons were on hand representing the Etsell family for the celebration. Elizabeth spoke to the gathering and expressed the Etsell family’s gratitude to the Salt Lake Committee for all the improvements that have been made.
The Salt Lake committee’s work has continued the wishes of Earl and Marjorie Etsell as they had intended. The evening concluded with a picturesque sunset and a bonfire.
Submitted by Stan Rampton, Chairman of the Salt Lake Committee