Adults who have been crowded into a small space to learn English, Journey House staff members who have been dispersed in dozens of small offices, and Longfellow School students who have taken classes in hallways all came together recently to celebrate the grand opening of the Journey House Center for Youth and Family Athletics.
The 34,000-square-foot multipurpose building alleviates a space crunch that has hampered Journey House and Longfellow for decades.
The event, held at 2110 W. Scott St. in Clarke Square, featured dancing, music, free food and book giveaways along with other activities for the hundreds in attendance. The striking new building features amenities such as a dance studio, state-of-the-art computer lab, teen lounge, large cafeteria, gymnasium and classrooms. Journey House administrative offices are also consolidated at the facility.
Steve Stanislawski, director of operations at Journey House, said that it took years of hard work to bring the organization’s programs into one building.
“Participants can now see how the youth and adult programs work together and complement each other,” Stanislawski said.
Tim Cherry, who sits on the Journey House board of directors, hailed the opening of the center as a tremendous opportunity for neighborhood residents.
“These are people who’ve not had access to facilities such as these,” he said. “Now they can take ownership because (the center) is theirs.”