A lead sponsorship opportunity for the 2019 Canada Winter Games is now available for municipalities across Central Alberta, after Red Deer County Council passed on the opportunity.

The platinum sponsorship would have included a ‘Red Deer County Main Street’ during the Games, to promote local businesses and tourism in the area.

They would have also received visible signage at all 15 venues and retained 20 per cent of volunteer positions for Red Deer County citizens.

Some councilors including Phillip Massier expressed concerns over the one million dollar price tag, referring to the $500,000 contributed by Red Deer County earlier in the year, for the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre at Red Deer College.

Instead Massier proposed cutting the sponsorship in half and contributing $500,000.

The amendment was approved by council and passed with a 5-2 vote.

Chair of the 2019 Canada Winter Games, Lyn Radford said it’s still a considerable amount of financial support and understandable with the state of the economy.

“I think in the end they may be disappointed with the about of visibility they’re going to get at the Games, but I’m not complaining at $500,000 either. I’m happy they even saw the value in the Games and hopefully their citizens will understand and see the value in it as well.”

Mayor Jim Wood expressed some disappointment referring to the uncertainty of whether or not the County would still get the ‘Red Deer County Main Street.’

“I’m not sure where we will be with that opportunity. It was going to take all of our agriculture producers within this region that wanted to display what they grow and have the opportunity to have people from all across Canada walk by. I’m going to work really hard and try to ensure that we are somehow able to bring this opportunity to the Games.”

Radford added, they are still 10 million dollars shy of their 33 million dollar budget and will be taking their presentation to other municipalities.