Metro/Handout The layout of the play structure of Steen’s Great Big Adventure.

NHLer Alexander Steen is embarking on a big adventure, ponying up $1 million towards a family entertainment centre near IKEA.

The Winnipegger, who plays forward on the St. Louis Blues, will own the 12,000-square-foot facility, called Great Big Adventure and set to open midsummer of this year.

“I wanted to create an inviting environment to give kids a chance to grow, learn and play,” said Steen, who is with his team getting ready for the playoffs, in a press release.

Jarret Hannah, Adventure’s vice president of operations, told a press conference at The Fairmont on Friday that he expects the centre to staff between 30 and 40 people.

“Alex sees this project as yet another vehicle to benefit kids,” added Hannah.

Facility manager Jackie Cunningham said what sets this centre apart from others is the programming that will be offered.

“When you come in and pay your daily admission, there’ll be programming available, so if you come in, there’ll be story time and a lot of focus on large-motor and fine-motor skills for the kids,” she said.

“All of this is going to be run and facilitated by early childhood educators.”

The centre offers a state-of-the-art, 3,500-square-foot play structure featuring five 15-foot slides, a toddler area, miniature hockey play area, as well as birthday party rentals, child care, nursery school, summer camps and charity events, Hannah said.

The facility will be located at 960 Lorimer Blvd.

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