Expansion no longer on YMCA
Added space will include a 6,000 square-foot
By Andrew Steele
Star Managing Editor
CROWN POINT - The Southlake YMCA announced plans last week for a $1.3
million expansion of its popular three-year-old facility at Court Street
and Burrell Drive.
"We believe this is the only YMCA in the Midwest
with a waiting list and now is the time to expand," said capital
campaign chairman Rich Oesterle.
Southlake YMCA membership has surpassed 5,000 since
the opening of the new building. Officials say the expansion will
include a 6,000 square-foot "multi-generational" room,
intended for use by senior citizens during the day and youths after
The room will include game and social areas,
computers and other activities for senior citizens, and will house
Gray-Y, Junior Gray-Y, Hi-Y, Arts and Crafts, and Youth Theater programs
for students, plus a study area and a game room.
The expansion will also include an addition of 2,400
square feet to the cardio-vascular and weight training room to
accommodate growing interest by women and teenagers.
A youth and adult aerobic and fitness room will also
be included in the expansion.
In addition to the building expansion, the project
will include a children's playground and outdoor courts. The fundraising
campaign for the project was kicked-off July 13 with a picnic for the
project's "Inner Family" - the YMCA's Board of Directors,
staff, and campaign committee.
Mark Bates, chairman of the "Inner Family"
gifts committee announced that the group had pledged $168,000 to the
campaign, surpassing the "Inner Family" goal of 10
"It demonstrates that our own family supports this project and that
we have set the tone and example for the rest of the community,"
The capital campaign began this week with the
"Pacesetting Gift Phase," which has a goal of $1 million. That
phase's committee will visit potential donors of $25,000 or more.
That will be followed by a "Major Gift
Phase" that has a goal of $200,000 in donations from area
professionals and businesses.
The final phase will be the "Community
Teams" campaign, during which current YMCA members and others in
the community will be asked for donations.
The existing facility was opened in October 1997. It
was constructed after a $2.5 million fundraising campaign.
Military musters award for Kuzman
Area recruiters take time to note passage to state's school access bill
By Andrew Steele
Star Managing Editor
CROWN POINT - Area armed forces representatives presented plaques of
appreciation to State Rep. Robert Kuzman (D-Crown Point) on Monday for
his sponsorship of a bill that recruiters believe will help them reach
more Indiana students.
The bill, which requires public schools to allow
recruiters to distribute information on opportunities in the military,
went through the Public Policy and Veterans Affairs Committee, which
The Indiana chapter of the Retired Officers
Association lobbied for the bill after recruiters told that organization
they were having trouble gaining access to students at some
"To represent the country is an honor,"
Kuzman said. "I think recruiters should be able to work with
The bill received bi-partisan support in the House
and Senate, Kuzman said, but did face some opposition from groups
concerned about giving military recruiters access to student
Kuzman said access won't be given without
Thomas Barnes, the former Gary mayor who is now the
area's civilian aide to the Secretary of the Army, said the bill will
help benefit students.
"There's never been a time that there have been
more benefits on the table for recruiters to offer people," Barnes
Retired Army colonel Joseph D. Ryan thanked Kuzman
for supporting the bill "all the way."
Army and Navy officers in charge of recruiting in
Indiana said the bill will help them.
Kuzman noted that recruiters in Lake County say local
schools are cooperative, and that "Crown Point is one of the best
recruiting places around."