Groundbreaking for the $15-million expansion of P.H. Kuyper Gymnasium was staged April 22, the next component of the Forever Dutch initiative. College officials honored the family of Pella Corporation founder P.H. “Pete” Kuyper (1913), who played an integral role in the development of the athletics complex. The family and their foundations teamed for a transformational $4.2-million gift for the Forever Dutch initiative, the largest gift in Central’s 163-year history. The donation included a lead gift from P.H. Kuyper’s daughter, M. Joan Farver ’88H, Chair Emerita of Pella Corporation and a Central College emerita trustee.
The gymnasium expansion will provide a new south entrance with high visual impact, including an atrium, expanded lobby, Hall of Honor and All-America corridor, highlighting more than 200 of the college’s most decorated student-athletes. An expansion to the west will create space for new varsity locker rooms for men’s and women’s squads, a new wrestling room and an enlarged area for a hitting cage for softball, baseball and men’s/ women’s golf. Also included are major infrastructure replacements and enhancements for the 47-year-old building.
Fundraising continues for the second component of phase two, an interior renovation that will provide a new team meeting space, new offices, athletic training room improvements and recruitment space. Additional practice and competition space could follow. The initial expansion is expected to be completed in early 2017.