Volunteers make Inwood Community Center prosper

Posted January 16, 2013 at 8:39 pm

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The Inwood Community Center has seen innumerable changes over the years. From its humble beginnings as a grain bin to its now vibrant times as the home of many offices, activities and events, the building’s evolution was made possible by the continual help and support of the community.

One of the more recent changes to the building is the installation of new carpet. With a $12,000 grant from the Lyon County Riverboat Foundation in spring 2012, the project began and has spanned several months. Additional funds are needed to cover the cost, which will be acquired through continual non-competitive grant awards and the library contributing its own portion. Given this lengthy process, it wasn’t until last week that the West Lyon FFA was recruited to help move boxes and furniture around the library to make the re-carpet possible.

This move took place nearly 20 years to the day that the city initially moved into the building. On Jan. 11, 1993, the Inwood City Council sold the former public library and city hall for $12,251. The library began the move that previous November, but the business offices didn’t follow until after the sale, with help from the FFA and other volunteers.

The volunteering and donations to establish an Inwood community center began long before, with the initial decision by the Inwood Development Corporation (IDC) to erect the structure. It was built in the 1980s, placed in an open lot next to the pool and tennis courts, with the intention of one day becoming a community center. However, the funding wasn’t available for the structure at that time, and to pay for it, the IDC rented it out as a corn storage unit, earning it the name, the “Corn Palace.” And that is what it remained for nearly a decade, until it was paid for, at which point the IDC sold it to the city for $1.

In 1990, fundraising began to pay for the new fire station and community center renovation. A total $214,836 was raised for the two. The fire station, built by volunteers, cost a total $53,128. The balance was assigned to the center. The additional $30,000 needed to cover the cost of the renovation was acquired through donations.

“The fire station and community center are part of a long line of projects in Inwood that have been put together by volunteers,” said then Mayor George Halma in 1993.

And so, with the recent grant money and the continued help and support of the community, the Center that is home to the city hall, the public library, the food pantry, and so many other activities and events will continue to serve the community that serves it.