Randolph Future Needs Committee Announces:‘Capital Improvement Campaign’ to kick-off soon

When you think of the Randolph County Fairgrounds, what is the first thing that pops into your mind? Most people would say the 4-H Fair including all the hot weath-er, animals and smells that go along with them. But to the Randolph Future Needs Committee, the first thought is much different. They think com-munity. In 2018 alone, the Fair-grounds was host to over 400 events. Yes, 400 dif-ferent events. Those events range from the obvious 4-H fair to the not so obvi-ous weddings in the show arena. Being the largest com-munity venue in the county, the fairgrounds is the obvi-ous choice when hosting large events. Recently, the grounds played host to hundreds of youth who participated in the Randolph County Youth Leadership Camp put on by Law Enforce-ment Officers from all over Randolph County. Given the large outdoor area with the covered show arena and the indoor cli-mate controlled Husted Hall, the grounds are per-fect for the event that is held there every June. Weddings and receptions have become a more com-mon user for the grounds. Wedding receptions are getting larger and the need for a large indoor area is perfect at Husted Hall. History of the Grounds Over the years many people have done research about the Fairgrounds and it’s beginning. At first, 4-H committees and councils were orga-nized by in May of 1953, acreage was leased from the county, a total of 23.2 acres, for 99 years. After the ground was acquired, a hog and cattle barn was built. In 1953, Husted Hall with concrete brick walls, insulated roof supported by wooden arches and rock and gravel floors was erect-ed for girls exhibits and year round use. In 1957, 30x40’ addition was built onto the main 4-H building containing a kitchen, restrooms and a storage room. Husted hall was completed the follow-ing year. In 1965, a screened-in area was added to Husted Hall for use by the exten-sion homemakers. That same year a show pavilion was built with bleachers added two years later. In 1970, the junior lead-ers food stand was built. In 1972, a horse and pony barn was erected and out-side restrooms were added. Then in 1974, a poul-try and rabbit barn were built. Also the Commercial Building was built as was the FFA Building. In 1980, additional stor-age to Husted Hall was made and the kitchen was enlarged. While in 1988, there was shade added at the Horse & Pony Ring. In 1997, the dining room in Husted Hall was en-closed with glass windows and air conditioning was added as was a new dining room floor. That same year Husted Hall was remod-eled and the Extension Of-fice was added with a grant from Build Indiana. Over the years numer-ous improvements have been made to make the Fairgrounds a more user friendly community venue. As the need to use the facility increases, so does the wear and tear on the facility. Here is where the efforts of The Randolph Future Needs Committee, become very important. This is a volunteer group whose purpose is to recog-nize what needs improved and find a way to raise the funds to help better the Fairgrounds facility. This Committee has worked for several months gathering information and getting estimates to bring a detailed plan to the public to outline the vast improve-ments and reconstruction of certain areas they deem necessary to enhance the facility. They will roll out their Capital Improvement Cam-paign plan just in time for the annual 4-H Fair. The planned projects will be completed in two phases. Each allowing dif-ferent ways to enhance cer-tain buildings and facilities that occupy this multi-acre piece of land. PHASE 1:Husted Hall Renovation From community dinners and meetings to auctions and exhibits, Husted Hall plays host to many visitors each year. Some are there to visit the Extension Edu-cators offices. While other are there to use the dining room and kitchen area. The Husted Hall renova-tion will be extensive in the dining and kitchen area, as it will bring a new state of the art equipment and an expanded dining area. Bathrooms and shower accommodations will also be expanded to allow for better use during formal events. There will also be a newly designated disaster relief shelter incorporated. PHASE 2:Show Arena Facility If you attend any of the outdoor shows or events, you know that the show arena is starting to show its age. From top to bottom the arena will be completely reconstructed to house not only a larger show arena, but the whole facility will be home to the concession stand, new bathrooms and showers, outdoor storage and it will all be under one roof. The beauty of this is that during those hot days you can find shelter under the big roof but still have the ability to wander to the bathrooms, grab a bite to eat and stay out of the sun. A completion date for both projects is estimated at 2023. These improvements come with a hefty price tag though. The estimated cost of the entire project is $1.3 million. The Committee is seek-ing donations to aid in their efforts to bring these features to the highly used community venue. People may ask, “I’m not into 4-H or agriculture. So why should I donate?” The answer is easy. The Fair-grounds are not just for 4-H anymore. To raise awareness and explain all the reasons for helping with this cam-paign, hand out informa-tion will be available at the Fairgrounds as well as vari-ous locations throughout Randolph County. If you are interested in donating, established ‘lev-els of giving’ have been created to accommodate anyone’s budget. All donors will receive recognition of their gifts. There will be different stages of recognition that coincide with your pledge. Those are featured to the right. In recent years, the Com-mittee has been responsible for raising funds for a new sheep barn and the LED lighted sign you see when passing the fairgrounds. There have been other improvements such as 50 new electrified camping spots, a new driveway and parking on east side of the grounds, new walk doors on commercial and poul-try buildings along with handicap to the poultry barn. There have also been additional kits for the 4-H robotics project. There have been addi-tional improvements to the Husted Hall with exterior lighting and landscaping and interior painting and carpeting in the conference room. The Committee con-sists of Mike Reed, Roger Gough, Tammy Sofronko, Tonia Coulter, Gordan & Marie Jackson, Jim & Me-linda Luttman, Rob Tim-merman, Brandon Emrick, Scott Jester, Andy Wagner and Aimee Inskeep.

Levels of Giving

With each level, there is a description as to the recognition a donor will receive with their contribution.

A Friend • Up to $500 donation. Recognized on Website, Social Media & at Grand Opening Events.

A Supporter • $501-$1,500 donation. Recognized on Website, Social Media at Grand Opening Events & Certificate of Appreciation.

A Contributor • $1501-$5,000 donation. Recognized on Website, Social Media at Grand Opening Events, Certificate of Appreciation & Banner Recognition for Husted Hall or Show Arena.

A Visionary • $5,001-$10,000 donation. Recognized on Website, Social Media at Grand Opening Events, Certificate of Appreciation & Banner Recognition for Husted Hall and Show Arena.

A Benefactor • $10,001 more donation. Recognized on Website, Social Media at Grand Opening Events, Certificate of Appreciation & Banner Recognition for Husted Hall & Show Arena, Plaque of Appreciation, Recogni-tion during fairgrounds events & your name listed on the permanent Recogni-tion Plaque in Husted Hall.