By Melanie Yingst
TROY — The Troy Rec has always been a safe place to go for local children — and thanks to two grants, the center now is even more safe and secure.
Thanks to two grants awarded to the Troy Rec, the center will have its first ever security system for peace of mind for parents of pre-school and older students.
Troy Rec director Nicole Hanes said The Rec received funding from the Miami County Foundation and matching funds from Paul G. Duke Foundation for the final phase of its project and most important part of the center’s facility renovation — a state of the art security system.
“We are grateful that the funding for the security system is in place as this week,” Hanes said last week as the security system was being installed at the historic center located on 11 N. Market Street.
New doors at the Water Street entrance are also being installed with a buzz-in system to control access to the center’s preschool and other events, Hanes said.
The buzz-in security system will provide additional security for the center’s before and after school program as well as its Smart Start Preschool, Hanes said.
According to Hanes, The Rec will be open for students sixth grade through high school for Christmas break although some components of the teen center are still in the works. New furniture and other familiar amenities such as the pool tables still need to be moved back in place, she said.
“We will be open and we will have things for the kids to do,” Hanes said. “They are really excited about all the changes that are being made and that’s what it’s all about.”
Updated entertainment options for teens who hang out at the center are in the process of being installed, Hanes said.
Students are encouraged to stop in at The Rec to see the new amenities that have been added for their use.
“You wouldn’t recognize the place if you were here before — it looks amazing,” she said.
After indoor soccer sessions are complete in April, the dance floor of the community center will begin its part of restoration.
Hanes said the center will be completed by June 2014 and will continue hosting students and events throughout the final phase of renovations being done in various parts of the building.
After the final touches have been made in the main area of the first floor, the center’s gym renovation will begin in January and should be completed in a month, Hanes said.
Finishing touches on the catering kitchen are in place for the center to be available for party and community event rentals, Hanes said.
The student tutoring area, including computers for research and homework assistance, are set to be available for the second half of the school year, she said.
Revamping the community center’s teen programs also are in the works, Hanes said.
“After we are done with the majority of the main area work, we’ll be working on The Rec’s programs really hard,” she said.
Hanes said The Rec is looking for high school students to help tutor fellow students after-school. Hanes said the after-school tutoring program is a great way for students who need community service hours.
In November, two grants were awarded to The Rec by the Paul G. Duke Foundation. One grant was awarded to support the renovation of The Rec’s historic building in downtown Troy, and the other to support the Summer Lunch Buddy program to provide Troy students in grades K-6 with a free lunch and literacy program.
Indoor soccer for children ages 4 through second grade are still being accepted.
For updated information and activities, visit www.troyrec.com. For additional information about the center’s programs, call 339-1923.