A recreation center can be the foundation of a community, a place where residents, especially the young, come together in the spirit of competition to learn about one another and grow as individuals.
The Geater Center of Anderson is such a place.
That’s why it’s excellent news that the center, which opened in the 1970s, will be getting a new gym floor.
The old floor, basically tile on top of concrete, posed safety and injury concerns. The floor surface was dangerously slick, and Anderson Parks & Recreation Department superintendent Stephon Blackwell said it could put a lot of stress on the knees, ankles and lower back.
Not at all the optimal situation for a basketball-centric facility.
The new floor will come at a cost of $61,000 and be installed by a company specializing in Division I basketball arenas, such as those at Purdue and Kentucky.
The renovation, which should take about six weeks to complete including a week for the floor to cure, will be funded with savings from the parks department’s budget last year. A dedication ceremony is set for 1 p.m. April 17, and we can’t wait to hear the squeak of basketball sneakers on the shiny floor.
Once the new surface is in place, the upgrade will allow Blackwell and the center to offer more opportunities to area youths. Already hosting a number of basketball camps during the spring and summer months, the parks department is considering a summer basketball league at the facility, providing another outlet for kids and the tidal wave of energy that’s been building inside them during this long, cold winter.
The Geater Center is an important place for kids to find a safe environment to play and get much-needed exercise through basketball and other recreational opportunities. It’s also an important place for neighbors to meet one another and share in the spirit of community.
The city should continue to invest in the Geater Center. Dedicating funds to the center’s improvement isn’t just about maintaining a building or its programs. It’s an investment in the community’s future.
In summary The Geater Center is an important place for kids to have a safe environment to play. The city should continue to invest in it and, by extension, the community.