By Brent Frankenhoff, Executive Director
Hello, everyone. We’ve kept you apprised of the Jensen Community Center’s plans throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and, at this time, we are on track for reopening, barring any changes to the recommended guidelines from the Portage County Board of Health and other governing bodies.
As of August 1, we are offering rentals of our various rooms to groups of 50 or fewer, but only one event in the building at a time with a gap between events to allow for cleaning and sanitizing. Once guidelines allow, we’ll increase the size of gatherings.
Meanwhile, there are plenty of opportunities to still enjoy the Jensen Center and many of the things it has to offer:
• Our wi-fi is available 24/7. Simply park in the parking lot near the building and join the “Jensen-Guest” network. No password required.
• We also have volunteers willing to help set up virtual online visits between families. Contact us for more details.
• We’ve relocated a couple of our wooden benches—one to the front of the building and the other near our flagpole.
• Our volleyball courts and horseshoe pits on the west side of the building are available. Just bring your own equipment. There is a volleyball league a couple of nights per week.
• The flower and butterfly garden near our south entrance was redone earlier this year and is quite beautiful.
• The native prairie area of our west lawn and our pergola is another spot for quiet reflection. We’re planning to move the pergola later this year to the front lawn for even greater access.
• Looking for something to read? Our Little Free Library near the front entrance is fully stocked with a variety of books for all ages.
• The Cycling Without Age program has delivered a trishaw to the Center. Jake Barnes is heading up the local program, offering rides by appointment. Contact him at 715-498-2582 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• And, coming up in late August/early September, it’s our annual Plant Drop, Swap, and Shop event where area gardeners are invited to bring their extra plants to the drive through area of the Jensen Center, look at what others have donated, and pick out some new plantings. You can leave a donation to the Jensen Center in our dropbox attached to the pillar across from the front entrance. See the ad elsewhere in this issue for more details.
While we’re happy to see our many friends at the Center, we do ask that you make an appointment, rather than just dropping by. When you do visit, please follow these guidelines to help prevent the spread of disease:
• Do not visit if you are sick.
• Wash and sanitize your hands. Sanitizer is available throughout the building.
• Socially distance at least six feet apart.
• Staff members will be wearing masks, and we politely ask that you do the same. We have disposable masks available if you forget yours.
• Our water fountains in the building have been turned off until further notice, so bring your own water.
We look forward to reopening and seeing all of you again soon.