Southwestern’s Leiske-Pultar Gymnasium received an upgrade this summer in the form of a new gym floor.
The gym is a multi-purpose venue where many activities take place such as exercising, intramurals, SA activities, basketball games, events, and classes. Despite the common belief that the gym is a beautiful facility, one area that hasn’t been as nice as the rest is the old wood-on-concrete gym floor.
Last fall, Southwestern’s old bookstore was remodeled and converted into what is now a popular place on campus, the student center. James The, vice president for student services, felt that the success of the student center should be followed by another one at the gym.
“The Student Center was such a big hit and people go there a lot now for activities, Sabbath schools, afterglows, parties, and events,” says Dean The. “If we could do something on a bigger scale, students would love it. And so I thought, maybe it’s time to look into a new gym floor.”
Dean The called some companies and asked them to come take a look at Southwestern’s facilities and provide bids. Dean The, along with Russ Laughlin, vice president for spiritual development, and Francis Nicholas, head basketball coach, visited other schools to view a variety of floors.
Construction started mid-June when they tore out the old floor and in the past few days the gymnasium has finally reopened with a beautiful new floor.
“Sometimes I don’t even want people to step on the floor it’s so nice,” says Dean The jokingly.
Along with the new wood floor, a curtain now comes down between the two courts making it possible for two classes to run simultaneously on different sides of the gym. In addition, the gym has a new floor covering. The gym now features three basketball courts; two going across the gym floor and the third running the length of the gym, to be used when Southwestern plays other schools.
Students have already begun to comment on the new addition to the gym. “It was a good investment for the school. It looks great, and will definitely be used to the fullest,” says T.J. Grady, sophomore kinesiology major.
“We’re excited,” says Dean The. “Even though we have a nice, new wood floor, we still want to be able to accommodate programs that we have on campus. It’s still a multi-purpose venue.”