Hawaii’s Kroc Center on schedule
Western Territory’s fourth Kroc Center is set for January 2012 opening.
By Laura Kay Rand
Excitement is building for January 2012—that’s when The Salvation Army Hawaiian and Pacific Islands Division will celebrate the grand opening of its Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center. Four of the nine planned buildings are erected and the roof above the worship and performing arts center should be up soon.
Corps Officer Major Phil Lum, Kroc Center Hawaii project director, and Bram Begonia, director of operations, have been meeting with key community groups to establish the partnerships that will link the center with a number of its core audiences.
“This is a time of celebration as we are seeing the Kroc Center come to life before our eyes,” Lum said. “We are so grateful to everyone who has contributed to this significant effort. Their support and faith have made the Kroc Center possible.”
The 200,000 sq. ft. Kroc Center will span 15 acres in East Kapolei, Hawaii. It will house a 500-seat worship and performing arts theater; a 720-seat banquet, education, and conference center; an early childhood education center for 150 preschool students; a 14,000 sq. ft. health and wellness center; an athletic center with an NCAA regulation gym; an aquatics center with a 14-lane competition pool plus a large leisure pool with slides and a lazy river; a three-acre outdoor park for sports and recreation; and a 48-bed dormitory for traveling sports teams, short-term conferences, and mission teams.
The dream of a Kroc Center in Hawaii became reality when Hawaii Divisional Headquarters received a $110 million award through Joan Kroc’s bequest and a $23 million community match. Initial fundraising efforts received a jump-start four years ago with a $1 million grant from the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation.
“We are proud to support The Salvation Army Kroc Center and are pleased to see the structure coming to fruition,” Mitch D’Olier, president and CEO of the Castle Foundation, said. “Kroc Center Hawaii is an amazing strategic opportunity for Hawaii and a chance to bring educational and recreational opportunities to the underserved.”
“We Believe!” is a new campaign currently underway, designed to build on the financial support already received by promoting awareness of the center, membership, sponsorship, and involvement in Sunday worship services and programs throughout the week. McDonald’s of Hawaii will launch the $1 million project with a lead grant of $300,000.
The largest community center of its kind in Hawaii, the Kroc Center expects to serve more than 2,000 people per day when it becomes fully operational.