Donnelly College plans a grand opening and dedication of its new Community Event Center at 1 p.m. Friday, April 5, at the campus at 608 N. 18th St.
The new $1.5 million center will provide 3,196 square feet for event programming space, according to Donnelly College information. It will double Donnelly’s event space and will include a catering kitchen, state-of-the-art multimedia technology, a circle drive dropoff and a lighted outdoor courtyard.
With capacity to accommodate up to 175 people, the center will be used for meetings and campus events. It also will be available on a first-come, first-served basis for private and nonprofit events. Rental rates will apply.
The grand opening and dedication will be open to the public. Scheduled to speak are Mayor Joe Reardon and other supporters. Archbishop Joseph Naumann of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, is scheduled to give a blessing, and tours of the new facility are planned.
“In addition to enriching the experiences of our students, the new Community Event Center promises to strengthen Donnelly’s connection to the KCK community,” said Steven M. LaNasa, Donnelly president. “As a neighborhood anchor in central KCK, Donnelly is deeply committed to helping area residents pursue higher education opportunities. The center will create opportunities for individuals and groups from diverse background come together on the DC campus.”
The opening of the center marks the completion of the first phase of a comprehensive, multi-year Donnelly campus improvement plan. The next phase of development will focus on renovations to the main tower including construction of a new entrance, a state-of-the-art academic resource center and library, a campus chapel and additional improvements that enhance the overall learning environment.
“This project is the most ambitious development effort launched since the college’s founding by Bishop Donnelly and Sister Jerome Keeler in 1949,” said William H. Dunn Jr., Donnelly College trustee and co-chair of the project’s capital campaign. “We’re pleased to be investing in the future of Donnelly and in KCK’s urban core because the College’s diverse student body represents our world – and our future. Here at Donnelly, students are getting skills and tools that will pave the way for future success.”