The Terrace Northmen Rugby club held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on June 15 in Terrace to officially open the first rugby pitch in northern B.C. (Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

First dedicated rugby field in northern B.C. opens in Terrace

The Northmen Rugby Club held the ribbon-cutting celebration

Sports history was made in Terrace on June 15 with the grand opening of the first dedicated rugby field in northern B.C.

The Terrace Northmen Rugby Club hosted the ribbon-cutting ceremony at Coast Mountain College during their final league weekend.

“It has been quite a process, it’s really been quite a feat… [but today] the energy was quite high. The best way to describe it, I would say is just overwhelmingly supportive,” says Evan van Dyk, president of the Terrace Northmen Rugby Club.

“We’ve been playing rugby here for 45 years so this gives us a place we can call home. We can develop the game on rugby-dedicated fields and we can hopefully grow the sport, here in northern British Columbia.”

The Prince Rupert Seamen, Prince George Gnats and William Lake Rustlers attended the event to celebrate and play their final matches against the Terrace Northmen Rugby Club, who also scored the highest points overall and were crowned the season’s winners.

READ MORE: Canadian rugby players wear orange for B.C. girl fighting leukemia

Van Dyk says the project to complete the field, which took five years to complete and cost $100,000, has been the club’s dream for decades. Through a Northern Development Initiative Trust grant, fundraisers, sponsors and other donations, they were able to fund their dream of having a rugby field come true.

To speed up the process and reduce costs, the Terrace rugby club took on a lot of the groundwork with the help of local experts and contractors.

“It’s been a long, long few years and a lot of organization getting out and doing the work ourselves,” said Van Dyk. “We came out, dug the ditches, laid the pipes, sealed it all together and installed the sprinklers as a rugby team… but it just means it’s a lot more meaningful to play on now. It’s something we were a part of.”

READ MORE: Williams Lake and Terrace high school teams square off in rugby action

Located at the local college grounds, Van Dyk says their league won’t have to pay an annual fee to use the field and it will be available to the public.

At the ribbon-cutting, they also had the field blessed by Kitsumkalum leader Sharon Bryant of the Laxibu clan to acknowledge the First Nations’ land the field resides on.

“It was important for us to recognize where we’re playing. We wanted to make sure that we did this right and had a proper welcome onto this field. That was something we’re really pleased to be able to do,” says Van Dyk.

Now that they have a proper field to play on, they’re eager to get more people to come out to their games and join their team. Playing since 2006, Van Dyk says that rugby is a very inclusive sport.

“If you haven’t really got into team sports before as a child, there’s a spot for you in rugby,” he says. “The teams are extremely welcoming when you arrive.

“The teams will usually provide food, drinks and everything else to host you. And we do the same when people come to us so it’s just a very welcoming sport.”


 


natalia@terracestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

(Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

Just Posted

Remembering Rupert: A historical report on Prince Rupert during the Second World War

For the 75 anniversary of D-Day and Normandy, we remember WWII through the eyes of Prince Rupert

Old Timers Tournament begins its third decade of action in Prince Rupert

Rupert teams take on visitors from Haida Gwaii, Kitimat, Terrace, Hazelton and Smithers

Freezing rain warning issued for central Interior Remembrance Day

Highway alerts in place for Begbie Summitt and Pine Pass

Rainmakers rugby makes the trip to Kamloops for Sevens tournament

Competition is the largest of its kind in the country

BCTF rejects mediator’s recommendations for settlement

Negotiations between B.C. teachers and the province will continue

Heart of Our City | The humble automotive mechanic next door

Frank Repole has been sponsoring Prince Rupert his whole career

Canada among three G20 countries least likely to hit emissions targets

It says Canada, South Korea and Australia are the farthest off

Conservatives’ Scheer wants Trudeau to open Parliament Nov. 25

That’s five days after Justin Trudeau is scheduled to swear in a new cabinet

Last remaining Centurion tank from the Korean War makes its journey ‘home’ to B.C.

Tank arrives in B.C. the day before Remembrance Day after a more than 4,500-kilometre transfer

‘Your vehicle burns a lot of fuel:’ Victoria drivers wake up to angry notes

‘This handbill was left on your vehicle because your vehicle burns a lot of fuel,’ notes read

Canadians mark Remembrance Day this morning

This year exactly 101 years to the day after the end of the First World War

Devils strike early, hang on for 2-1 win over Canucks

Vancouver now 0-8-3 in last 11 games versus New Jersey

Zombie debt will haunt more Canadians as scourge of indebtedness rises: experts

Total debt per consumer has surged to $71,979 in the second quarter

Most Read