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Georgian Bay Snowriders Club's new home pays tribute to OFSC founder

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The Georgian Bay Snowriders Club now has a place to call home in Victoria Harbour, with a facility that will be used as a training hub and a house for its equipment.

"Our district, district eight of the OFSC is 10 snowmobile clubs. In our organization, there's probably about 50 employees in the winter that have to be properly trained, and we'll share this facility for storage and the maintenance of their equipment," said Patrick Murray, Georgian Bay Snowriders president.

The Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) was created back in 1967 by John Power - this building is dedicated in his honour.

"John spent the next 20 plus years travelling across all of Ontario joining snowmobile clubs and getting them to join into the federation which has now created at 30,000 kilometres trail network in the province," said Murray.

John Power's sons were also in attendance Friday afternoon and said it was a great tribute to their father.

"When your parents and your father do something wonderful, it's nice for that to be acknowledged, and Pat has done a great job really bringing all this together," said Sean Power, son of John Power.

"He found a passion. He loved being outside and found a way to make a living at it as well by writing about it. Quite frankly, until the Ontario Federation contacted us, I had no idea how involved he was in snowmobiling, but it definitely was a big part of his life, and the folks here in the local club have just done a phenomenal thing and providing us with this legacy as well," said Mike Power, another son of John Power.

The Orillia District Snowmobile Club (ODSC) will also have access to the new building.

The ODSC looks after close to 300 kilometres of trails, and officials said this would come in handy all year round.

"We don't have a building or a place that we can get to during the winter that we can put them out. So, if we have to do some maintenance and whatnot, we're normally outside. We do occasionally borrow somebody's garage or something, but it's so nice to be able to bring them into a building, thaw them out, warm them up and then we'll be able to store them in here for the summer as well," said Rob Love, Orillia District Snowmobile Club president.

Officials said between 200 clubs and 5,000 volunteers, the social and economic impact of organized snowmobiling in our province has generated over six to $8 billion.

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