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The Communicator NEWS & POLITICS

Community Center Celebrates 40’th Anniversary

Written by: Communicator StaffSeptember 21, 2017

By: Nicole Winans

The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Community Center’s 40th Anniversary Celebration has been in the works for quite some time. Staff began planning the event over 2 years ago.

“We knew we wanted to do something to celebrate,” said Patti Davis, the Community Center manager.

The party will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Sept. 29 at the Community Center, 233 W. Main St., and is free for all ages.

Beginning at 4 p.m. there will be family activities, including inflatables, a GaGa ball pit, shuffleboard, games, crafts, a scavenger hunt and food.

From 6 to 8 p.m., the celebration will be open for adults ages 21-plus, offering trivia, shuffleboard, cornhole, foot darts, wine and beer tasting, a chili cook-off between downtown area restaurants and music by DJ Chris of Get Up to Get Down Entertainment.

Throughout the celebration, there will be music and a giant wall painting canvas. Photo albums and a slideshow will be available to reminisce on the center’s history.

“The celebration is to let people know we are here,” Davis said.

Even after 40 years, the Community Center is still one of Fort Wayne’s best-kept secrets, Davis said.

While the senior citizen program is well-established, the center now offers programs designed for young adults and youth as well.

The center first opened in 1977 as a senior citizen’s center with programs designed specifically for people ages 55 and older.

But people in that age group did not want to come to a place called the Senior Center, Davis said. In 1992, the name was changed, and programs for all ages started being offered.

The Community Center provides drop-in programs as well as preregistered classes. These include educational classes, special interest classes, health and fitness programs, and special events. Several annual events are offered throughout the year, including a Halloween Haunt, Lighting Ceremony, Santa’s Workshop and others.

Some of the center’s current classes and workshops include pottery, essential oils, glass fusing, ukulele, belly dancing, tap dancing, photography and graphic design.

The Community Center is also looking for volunteers to get involved, Davis said.

The center currently has about 175 volunteers and welcomes college-age students who are looking to get community service hours or simply give back.

“(Volunteers) are the first person you see when you come in the door,” Davis said. “We would not do near what we do without our volunteers.”

The center also offers opportunities for internship programs as well as instructors.

To learn more about these opportunities or about the Community Center’s events and programs, visit www.fortwayneparks.org.