Community Stories

 ‘Diving in’ to a new routine

September 25, 2020

Since welcoming citizens back to our recreation and culture facilities, it is evident that both customers and staff are happy to be back. Things might look a little different, but that hasn’t stopped Red Deerians from enjoying their favourite activities – and finding new ones!

Lynn and Ray – a husband and wife who have been members at the Collicutt Centre for years – have easily adapted to new ways. Previously, the pair would drop in for their favourite activities – the fitness area for Ray and aquatic fitness classes for Lynn. But with new COVID-19 restrictions, recreation centres have switched from traditional drop-in programming to Activity Reservations. This means everything from using the gym or pool to the walking track and arena need advance online reservations.  

New to the online system, it didn’t take Lynn and Ray long to get up and running.

“Just get online, just get started and then it’s fine!” said Lynn.

Once they were confident with the system, Ray started booking aquatic fitness classes for both of them.


“Oh it’s just great, I don’t even want to tell you what time I wake up to make sure I reserve my spot,” said Ray. “But I’ve reserved our time for the next two weeks in advance. I really like the online reservations because I can get in faster and it’s quicker than over the phone.”

The global pandemic hasn’t only changed the way our recreation centres operate, for some it has spurred a new routine. While Lynn has been a regular at aquafit for six years, it’s new territory for Ray. Both are glad to be back at the Collicutt Centre and enjoying fitness activities once again.

Understandably, healthy and safety is a concern when resuming regular recreation and other activities following the closures we saw in recent months. The health and safety of both customers and staff is our number of priority, and many new procedures have been implemented.

When asked how they felt about returning, both Lynn and Ray commented on the confidence they have in the facility and with the staff.

“We feel very safe, these guys (the staff) do a marvelous job, and with the social distancing and all the signage; we feel very safe,” said Ray.

As a long-time user of the pool, Lynn said “I feel the same when I am in the water as I did before!”

Mental health and emotional well-being have emerged as critical areas of concern as the pandemic continues. There is no doubt that many people are craving normalcy, social interactions and connections, and opportunities to remain active. For Lynn and Ray, their time at the Collicutt Centre is part of the remedy.

“The staff here are so great, and we have so much laughter and fun,” said Ray. “They are so funny and we get to enjoy our time while we are here, it has made a big impact on how we feel,”

And Lynn sums it up perfectly, “I am just so happy to be back!”Sept 25 swim

To find out more about how you can get up and running online visit