By Cecilia Nasmith/Today’s Northumberland
Campbellford’s Westben Centre for Connection and Creativity Through Music is set to offer open-air concerts from July to September, thanks to the $38,000 Resilient Communities Fund grant announced today by Northumberland-Peterborough South MPP David Piccini.
The funding is being used to build an outdoor bandshell, install electricity and add an accessible path that will provide space for safe physical distancing.
“The Resilient Communities Fund grant has been instrumental in helping to offer new safe, exciting music and nature experiences in 2021,” Westben co-founder and marketing director Donna Bennett said in the announcement.
“The grant is aimed at bringing audiences, learners and volunteers back to community programming by creating safe, physically distanced spaces and maximizing Westben’s beautiful outdoor rural setting.”
Citing the impact of the pandemic on the county’s dynamic heritage and tourism sectors, Northumberland County Warden Bob Crate said this kind of support is key to reinvigorating these sectors and the broader economy.
“As Westben gets set to welcome audiences to a vibrant new space, thanks to this investment from the province, I wish them every success,” Crate stated.
With the construction of new outdoor spaces that can accommodate physically distanced gatherings, modifications to the barn and washrooms, and directional signage, Westben has health and safety protocols in place for the 2021 season, both at the Barn and at the new Willow Hill amphitheatre that will stand them in good stead now and for the future beyond COVID-19.