Children running, laughing, learning and playing–meanwhile balloons are flying all about and everyone’s participating in some good old-fashioned family fun! That’s exactly what you hope to see at the opening of a new community clubhouse.
Last Saturday, October 7, 2017, the Boys and Girls Clubs of St. Helena & Calistoga (BGC) held a grand opening ceremony at their brand new 15,393 square foot Calistoga Clubhouse designed by Gould Evans.
The ceremony kicked off with a welcome by Maria Castro, 2017 Youth of the Year, and opening remarks by Josh Clark, the BGC’s President of the Board of Directors. Many renowned community members were there to help celebrate including the Mayor of Calistoga, Chris Canning, and U.S. Congressman, Mike Thompson along with the hundreds of people across Napa Valley who helped to make this $11M project a reality. BGC Executive Director Trent Yaconelli talked about how grateful he was to everyone who contributed and reminded us who it’s really all about—the kids.
Donning BGC construction hard hats and holding a giant pair of blue scissors, the Calistoga Club Kids cut the ribbon, claiming their new Calistoga Clubhouse as their own.
Walking (or running in a few cases) through the main entrance into the centralized “Gamesroom”, parents and children’s eyes alike quickly scanned the room to take it all in. The high ceilings and large windows letting in loads of natural light combined with the concrete floor makes you feel less like you’ve entered into a building, and more like you’ve entered into an interior courtyard. Yet the contrast of a carpeted area hosting numerous games—Giant Connect Four, pool tables, foosball and shuffle board—has the familiarity and heart of a family room.
Located at the center of the clubhouse, the Gamesroom becomes the hub of activity and large sliding glass doors open it up to the rest of the building, including a STEM Lab, Art Lab and Learning Lab along one edge and the Kitchen and Dining areas along the other.
Patios on each side of the building provide outdoor learning opportunities and a greater connection to nature, such as the incorporation of an edible garden to reinforce the “farm to table” culture of the county.
The large glass windows and doors throughout the clubhouse allow constant visibility for staff to easily monitor children while letting “kids be kids”—no matter where they may run off to. The administrative offices even look out on the dining patio.
The bathrooms and Gymnasium reside in the back of the building behind the Gamesroom, a creative adjacency which allows the BGC to open up the gym to the community while keeping the clubhouse secure during non-operating hours.
Constant approvals of “Wow!” and “This is awesome!” echoed throughout the clubhouse while children engaged in all kinds of activities with their friends and family. Signs, plaques and donor names residing in dedicated spaces help inspire and reflect on how these community contributions make a difference.
Editor’s Note: Gould Evans extends our deepest sympathies to those affected by the recent fires devastating Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino counties. It’s times like these that the strength of our communities truly shine through. We strongly encourage everyone to help with relief efforts and you can find out various ways on how to do so here.