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Wadena Community Center sets up shop in temporary location

Photo by Rachelle Klemme The weight room in the Wadena Community Center's temporary new location is up and running. The weight room equipment survived the June 17 tornado.

The ultimate rebuilding of the Wadena Community Center is somewhere down the road, but according to Manager Jenn Miller, the people who exercised and made friends at the now-destroyed facility have a chance to get back to some normalcy at the center's temporary new location.

Miller said the center is now open for current and prospective members. People whose memberships expired over the summer can return since they didn't get to use June, July, August and September, she said.

"What we're doing is taking those four months and adding it onto your membership," Miller said.

She also said that through Oct. 29, people who purchase or renew memberships will receive three months free.

A sign hung on the wall marks the building on U.S. Highway 10 and 1st St. SE near BP and Wadena Outfitters. The weight room equipment, salvaged from the original site after the tornado, is in place along with new cardio equipment on the carpeted floor.

Miller said the Community Center would use the building's back room to bring back group fitness. Racquetball and walleyball are on hold, she said, and they are hoping to get a sauna but can't guarantee it.

Miller said that building work would be done by the end of October and first part of November, and that there would be a grand re-opening at a time to be announced.

She said that the social aspects of the community center had been a great loss since the tornado.

"You get your normal group of people that come in at a certain time every day. That was one thing I heard right after the tornado," Miller said. "The friendships that were formed."

Hours are Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Sunday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. The hours may change, she said.

The relocated community center can be reached at the same phone number: (218) 631-3031.