“I Truly Don’t Plan On Giving Up” Dunvegan Gardens Reacts To Council’s Decision

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“I Truly Don’t Plan On Giving Up” Dunvegan Gardens Reacts To Council’s Decision

Dunvegan Gardens isn’t giving up in its battle against the municipality.

On Tuesday, Wood Buffalo council voted against their application to change their boundary in Draper.

This means Dunvegan can no longer have their farm animals or run a retail store.

Vice President of Operations Brad Friesen tells Fort McMurray News he has stopped selling giftware, but says he’s keeping the animals as they’re registered with the province and RMWB.

“As for our next move, we haven’t decided what that is, I guess time will tell. I fought this long and this hard and I truly don’t plan on giving up.”

Friesen can appeal the decision or submit another application in six months.

Mayor Don Scott brought forward another motion at Tuesday’s meeting which would have had administration work with Dunvegan.

It was rejected by a vote of 6-2.

"Are we going to keep doing this over and over," said Councillor Verna Murphy.

She says Dunvegan is a special place to many but they can't keep playing favorites.

Friesen feels they’ve never been favored by the municipality.

“If anything, the exact opposite,” said Friesen. “I mean we had the emergency personnel (during the wildfire), we were a sanctuary for those people, and to me, they slapped me in the face when they gave me a stop work order in September (2016).”

Despite the ongoing battle, Friesen says they’re seeing an increase in visitors compared to this time last year.

“To me, it shows obviously people don’t want to lose us. We’re more than just the retail giftware whatever you want to call it.”

Until Dunvegan figures out their next move, Friesen says their park is open, they’re selling their bedding plants, and still plan to have the corn maze later this summer.
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