Two organizations make first pledges to Purdue Extension community building project
Friday, July 19, 2013
By Nick Schneider, Assistant Editor – Greene County Daily World
The first two major pledges to be used for the renovation of the Extension Service Building at the Greene County Fairgrounds were announced Thursday afternoon during the annual 4-H Fair Awards ceremony.
The Greene County Foundation has pledged up to $50,000 and the Greene County Extension Service is pledging up to $20,000 on a match basis to help pay for the renovation project estimated to cost about $827,000.
Both pledges will be a 50-cent match for every dollar donated until September 15, according to Greene County Foundation Executive Director Cam Trampke and Greene County Extension Service Educator/County Director Lindy Miller.
The $50,000 from the Foundation would become $150,000 with the 50-cent match per dollar donated and the $20,000 Purdue Extension Service pledge will become $60,000, if the pledge is matched, according to Trampke.
“The Greene County Foundation Board is stepping forward today with a pledge of $50,000 that we will match 50-cents of every donation that comes in for the building. Basically, you will get a 50 cent return on every dollar of your investment,” Trampke said.
She added that with the two donation there is $70,000 already committed for this project.
“With that match we can turn that into $210,000 which is a wonderful testament to this community and their interest and support of this building. I think that will go a long way in terms of moving this project forward,” Trampke said. “What we would like everybody to know is if you give even $5 it’s going to become $7.50.”
Miller told the gathering that the office has served the community well for a number of years, but is in great need of a facelift.
“We want this to be a public-private partnership,” Miller said. “Community leaders and county leaders have gotten behind this and are willing to support this.”
He added, “The county leaders aren’t even asking for the majority of the project to be private support donations. They just want to make sure the community is behind it and takes a leadership role in it. It’s been a great partnership that put that building on this facility (the fairgrounds) and have supported this. We want to renew that partnership and make sure know how important this facility is to Greene County.”
The county owns the land on which the Extension Service building now sits; however, most of the surrounding fairgrounds property is owned by 4-H Clubs of Greene County, Inc.
The 150-feet x 80-feet building is presently occupied by the Greene County/Purdue University Extension Service on the east-side and the offices of the Greene County Community Foundation on the west-side of the facility.
One of the features of the renovation will be the addition of two new conference room areas — bringing the total to three, which can be used by the various clubs associated with the Extension Service, 4-H, Extension Homemakers, Ag, public and Foundation functions.
The office hosts meetings and is generating some revenue from rentals for wedding receptions, tool sales, flea markets, birthday, graduation parties and other functions.
Trampke said a survey shows the 40-plus-year-old building is very heavily utilized.
“Eight out of every 10 days there is some kind of activity that takes place in that building. It may be a 4-H activity. It may be a community activity … 286 days from June of 2012 to June of this year it was used 286 days out of 365 days and that just generally with one activity. That number doesn’t say how many people were turned away because they couldn’t get into this building,” Trampke explained. “What we are looking at is renovations of and expanding the ability to house and utilize the building even more. We’d like to make more conference space, more meeting space.”
In the renovation, the Foundation offices are proposed to move to a new 50-feet by 80-feet addition on the east side of the building that will also be used by the Extension Service.
The addition, as drawn on preliminary sketches by the Vincennes-based architect firm of Myszak and Palmer, will include: a vestibule, an Extension Services reception area, four offices as well as conference room area, two rest rooms and storage space.
The existing side of the building is proposed to get an interior make-over that will re-align a conference room in the area now occupied by the Foundation office, the addition of two rest rooms with access to the large 7,838 square feet community/exhibition room, the addition of storage areas, a break room and a renovation to the Purdue Extension work/office area.
The Greene County Economic Development Corporation Office, now located in MainSource Bank in Linton, is expected to move to the renovated quarters.
“Every little bit helps, we all know that,” Trampke said. “We want to make everybody a part of this project.”
Donations can be made on this site…and will be matched. Credit card donations accepted.