Funds From Crockett Estate Benefit RCC

Thursday, July 28, 2016
Linda Robinson, director of the Rector Community Center, chaired the planning meeting and gave the community center committee a tour of recent upgrades made possible by a portion of the funds from the late Melvin Crockett's estate. Members present were, from left: Front -- Marvin Gatewood, Jessie Malin, Linda Robinson and Kim Romine. Back -- Christa Hedrick, Jane Huffman, Clarence Huffman and Martha Thompson. Several committee members were unavailable for the meeting.(courtesy photo)

With funds available from the generosity of the late Melvin Crockett's estate, the Rector Community Center has recently accomplished some refurbishing, repair, and updating tasks delineated by Linda Robinson, center director.

Robinson has led the community center committee's action with fund raising for the center, lowering utility rates and replacing broken equipment with energy-efficient upgrades. The City of Rector has noticed the difference in utility bills and increased use of the facility and has supported Robinson and the committee in their decisions that look to the future.

At a planning meeting Monday, July 18, Robinson took the committee on a brief tour of the recent updates. In addition to the new flooring in the executive conference room, financed through fund-raising efforts during this past season, the room has received a fresh coat of creamy yellow paint along with new baseboard trim throughout the front of the building, all contracted through Sam Horton Flooring. Window treatments including wood blinds and valances spanning the four sections have been installed. Joey Fannin completed all the painting inside the community center.

Peggy Grimes, well-known seamstress in Rector, designed and sewed the valances. A paisley design in a substantial cotton fabric is eye-catching, modern, and has an elegant, yet simple, feel. Colors of gold, green, turquoise, and brown are in the fabric valances which are lined providing softness for the expanse of windows.

Drywall has been replaced in the lobby hallway and new baseboard trim has been added throughout the front area of the center. The vanities in both public restrooms have been secured to the walls. Seeping water has been stopped and plans are underway to rework the dirt and rough area outside the lobby's back door. Clarence Huffman has been the construction engineer for the projects and has provided labor and expertise.

In the dining room, wood blinds have been installed. Paint has been updated in two contrasting grays with white for the chair rail. The kitchen has been painted also, the same shade of gray as matches the counter tops. Plans are underway for Dick and Bonnie Harris to strip and redo the floors in the dining room and lobby areas and clean and buff the kitchen floors.

Future plans call for additional upgraded lighting in the multi-purpose room and behind the stage as well as in the dimly lit corners. Joey Pruett found frayed wiring in the sound system and has noted missing microphones, the center losing several over the 25 years of service by the initial sound system. Various upgrades have occurred over the years. Prior to Labor Day and the Ultimate Oldies Show, an additional upgrade of the sound equipment and microphones will be made. A sign-in, sign-out system has been established and lock and key containment area has been designed to guarantee the security of new equipment.

Roof and ceiling leaks are being addressed with an eye toward ice break installation prior to the winter. An additional refrigerator and a new freezer are also on the table for consideration with a plan to maintain certification as a relief center for the American Red Cross.

Under the leadership of Robinson, these improvements have been accomplished. Clarence and Jane Huffman have been integral in the day-to-day work for the accomplishments. Robinson is quick to include the entire committee, noting the cooperative spirit with which they tackle their tasks.

The public will notice these upgrades during the 2016 Labor Day Picnic festivities and the Friday evening, Sept. 2, Ultimate Oldies Show. The committee and Robinson encourage community members to celebrate with Rector as the community center showcases the upgrades, expresses gratitude to the estate of Melvin Crockett, and looks toward a bright future. (Tickets are available for the annual Oldies show for $20 reserved seating and $15 general admission by calling the Rector Water Office and speaking to Linda Robinson)

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