The Benalto train station restoration just received a massive donation from a family closely tied to the station.
The Donald family recently donated $30,000 towards the project, which will see the old CPR station transition into its new role as a community museum and recreation centre.
The committee working to fix up and transform the station give their thanks to the Donald family for their generous donation.
“Thanks to their insight in originally saving the building and giving it new life they are once again instilling their devotion to the community with their generous gift,” an official press release from the committee said.
Jack and Joan Donald, along with their children John and Kathy and their spouses, have a special connection with the old train station. It was once used as the family’s summer home near the C&E Trail.
The Donald’s purchased the train station in 1971, and hauled it to the east bank of the Red Deer River near the C&E Trail, where it became a home for summer get always.
The station was used by the Donald’s for a decade as a summer home before the family chose to sell it and build a more permanent house on the property.
After the family sold the station, it was relocated to an area near he Burnt Lake Industrial Park on the western edge of Red Deer.
The station continued it’s life as a home for another 32 years, thanks to the work the Donald Family put into it.
No longer needed as a residence, in 2012 the station was offered back to the residents f Benalto, and was moved back to town in April 2013.
The station is in the process of transitioning from a residential home to a museum and community gathering place.
A committee is in place to raise funds needed to finish the project.
“They have followed their home back to its origin,” said the press release.