Canteen services discussed

PALMER RAPIDS – During the regularly scheduled Brudenell, Lyndoch and Raglan (BLR) February 6 meeting, councillors had a discussion with a Palmer Rapids and Area Lions Club member with regard to coming to consensus about canteen service provided on bingo nights.


Lion David Henstock, a representative from the Palmer Rapids and Area Lions Club was present to hear council’s concerns regarding a change in the operation of canteen services during Wednesday Bingo Nights at the Palmer Rapids Community Centre.
Currently the Lions Club has been providing their own food and beverages as opposed to using the existing canteen and their products.
Councillor Heather Phanenhour said that the facility is rented out to the Lions Club at a reduced rate which only covers basic cleaning costs. However, any revenue coming from the canteen service had in the past offset the additional costs of hydro, heating and air-conditioning.
“In my personal viewpoint, I feel that with the Lions Club running their canteen services out of the hall [it] is taking away from income that the recreation committee could be gaining,” Phanenhour said.
Henstock said that the arrangement was working out well when the canteen was in its previous location next to the bingo games area. However, when the centre was reconstructed, the canteen was moved further away into the colder arena area.
Henstock observed that the people didn’t appreciate the new location, and expressed that when they started bringing in their own food and beverages.
“Basically without any kind of instigation from the Lions, the people that were using our services,[going to] the bingo game, were not actually typically going out to take service from the canteen,” Henstock said.
Phanenhour wondered why no one had been notified when the Lions Club made the decision to sell their own food and beverages.
Henstock said he was not aware of any restrictions on what tenants may or may not do, and if there was such a document would Clerk Michelle Mantifel please make it available to the club.
Councillor Garry Gruntz inquired about how much money the Lions Club typically make in an evening. Henstock did not know but could get the information if it is helpful.
A secondary issue raised by Henstock, that led the Lions Club to run their own food and drink cart, was that the canteen service had not been available year-round. As a result, summer people would leave the building to purchase snacks and drinks across the street at Hannah’s store instead.
“Seems strange that they can’t walk through a door 40 feet but they can walk across the street,” Councillor Steve Jessup.
In addition to the fact that bingo nights are a significant revenue generator, Henstock said they are providing an important social service, and it is important for the club as such to keep the people happy.
Story continues in the February 13, 2013 issue of The Valley Gazette.