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VOL. 116 | NO. 85 | Wednesday, May 1, 2002

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By JENNIFER MURLEY Cordova welcomes community center By JENNIFER MURLEY The Daily News Memphis Mayor Willie W.Herenton will join Cordova residents today as the public gathers for its first glimpse inside the new Bert Ferguson Community Center. Opening day festivities kick off at 11 a.m. at the community center, 8505 Trinity Road. Herenton, city councilman Jack Sammons and WDIA radio personality, Mark Stansbury, will be on hand to address the crowd. Live music will be provided by Cordova Middle School Symphonic Band. Community center staff will lead tours of the facility and begin open registration for upcoming summer classes. City officials said the $4.8 million facility was specifically designed in response to the demographics of the Cordova area. And, since there are no nearby full-service community centers, it will fill a need in the area. "We had a community meeting in November and did a survey, so were programming in accordance with the survey," said Cary Holladay public affairs manager of the citys division of park services. "We discovered there is a large adult population in that area, so were including a lot of activities for adults. There will be art classes and dance classes, and we encourage the residents to keep on letting us know what they want." The center houses an indoor gymnasium, a basketball court, two racquetball courts, a fully-equipped fitness room, an activities room with pool tables, a dance studio, art studio, conference room, banquet hall with attached courtyard and a catering kitchen. Although the center was designed with an adult population in mind, Holladay said it would provide activities for the entire community. "Its fully programmed to include athletic, social and recreational events for all ages," she said. The 32,000-square-foot facility, begun in September 1999, lies within the 40-acre Bert Ferguson Park, which includes tennis courts, a picnic pavilion and a one-mile walking trail. Aside from the centers numerous amenities, Holladay said an interior designer was consulted to add finishing touches such as artwork and furniture. "We want people to just stroll through the facilitysee what it has to offer," she said. "Its designed to be a warm and inviting place for families and individuals to enjoy." Willie Biles, former director of the Ed Rice Community Center, will serve as director of the new Cordova facility. Margaret Fluckers and Tonya Shropshire are the centers two assistant directors. Step/Jameson Gibson Construction Co. was the general contractor on the project. Formus Architects, Inc. was the project designer. The Bert Ferguson Community Center will be open 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday;. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; and closed on Sundays.  

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