Spring City seniors want to use former city hall for senior center

Spring City seniors want to use former city hall for senior center


Clara Hatcher

Staff writer



SPRING CITY—For seniors in Spring City, the new and renovated city hall building means more than just a nice meeting place for city officials—it means the former city hall might be the perfect place for a new senior and community center.

Owen Hogle conducted a meeting this past Tuesday for seniors and supporting community members where the main topic of discussion was a plan for the creation of this new center.

First, Hogle said, they would need board members.

“It’s sort of a chicken-egg situation,” Hogle said. “We have to get a proposal and board set and then we can decide what we really want this to be.”

The meeting was held at the old city hall at 150 E Center Street, next-door neighbor to the newly renovated city hall building. Nearly 30 senior community members were in attendance to discuss the project and take part in organizing it.

Spring City community members donated more than two million dollars for renovations in the new city hall building. It opens for operation officially this Thursday and is host to a new ballroom, artist’s loft, city office and council chambers.

There has, however, never been a senior center in the city. Hogle said the idea for the operation began with help from Spring City Mayor Jack Monnett and a “steering committee” to gather interest and members to help with the project.

Access, Marcy Savage said in the meeting, is one of the issues community members face. For Savage, the nearest computer access is in Mount Pleasant at the local library. With the new center, she said, comes the possibility of a reading room with computers for community use.

A lending library, lounge area, use of the center gym and kitchen and various classes were also brought up by community members in attendance. Possible classes discussed include yoga, tai chi, health and nutrition classes and various crafting lessons.

“Right now, there is a yoga class but if you put one of us in there with six 24-year-olds, the whole class falls apart,” Hogle said, laughing, at the meeting. “These classes would be geared toward seniors.”

According to Monnett, the city is in full support of the plan for the center.

“We want you all to succeed, we just need a committee organized and a proposal presented for council approval,” Monnett said at the meeting.

For city council approval, interested seniors must have a proposal including how the operation will be organized, a breakdown of administration and plans for the center, according to Monnett.

Hogle and Savage are two of the seven board members nominated at the meeting. Also nominated were Bonnie Jones, Renelle Smith, Gloria Black, Ken North and Pat Ellsworth. Elections for president, vice president and treasurer will be held at a later date.

Smith spoke on the issue of fundraising at the meeting and explained the possibility of a center thrift store where community members could donate unneeded items to be sold in the center. Revenue would help pay for center classes, utilities, the center’s renovation and possibly a van.

“If we got a van we could get people that can’t walk, see or drive and pick them up,” Jones said at the meeting.

Hogle explained in the meeting that the center, with approval from city council, could be up and running as late as spring. Later, he said that because the old city hall building is vacant, the center could be running within the month with good operation and organization.