A SCHOOL many times is the heart of a community, and since the Powhatan School no longer is in operation within the village, residents are doing the next best thing - directing their efforts to transforming the building into a community center.
In fact, the community center has been in operation since last year, but now funds are needed for it to continue.
The Powhatan Point Revitalization Association is attempting to raise $50,000 by Saturday, March 1, to keep the building in compliance with state regulations.
That group and other volunteers already have invested hours of their personal time and more than $20,000 in donations in developing the center. Varied activities already have taken place there, and there is an opportunity for more development.
As Randy Sisson, association president, pointed out the building has rental space available for a small business incubator, and that's something that has never existed in Powhatan.
The building is large enough to handle the Powhatan Antique and Crafts Mall, a certified kitchen for take-out/delivery pizza, a haunted house, show events, "Christmas in the Village" support as well as a gym for ball game and cheerleading practices and other activities.
In its issuance of the Powhatan Community Challenge, the association hopes to raise funds through memory bricks which will be engraved with the donor's name or the name of a friend or loved one with his or her class for a donation of $100. Individuals or groups of individuals are being encouraged to consider making generous donations to cover all graduates in their class.
Such a display of bricks would serve as testimony to happy memories of the brick school.
Checks for the "PPRA/Community Center" may be mailed to the Powhatan Point Revitalization Association, 125 Second St., Powhatan Point, OH 43942, and these are requested by March 1. The name(s) and graduating class year(s) are to be included for the bricks.
MANY other communities in Eastern Ohio have transformed former schools into buildings of importance for their areas, sometimes serving a place for municipal offices, gyms for rental and rooms for meeting places and senior citizen activities.
It's important that the community spirit shown in the past in Powhatan Point remains an important force so this large building can continue to be a vital part of the village.