Mortgage burning affirms Generations’ glowing success

THE INNOVATIVE GENERATIONS CENTER in Plymouth has been a great success in its first two-plus years.

It has met its mission of providing services to groups of all ages, from pre-school to senior citizens, and fostering and encouraging interactions between age groups that provide benefits to all involved.

And now the Plymouth Intergenerational Coalition has met its fund-raising goal, paying off the mortgage to build the center in less than two and a half years.

The coalition celebrated the milestone with a mortgage-burning ceremony Saturday at the center, complete with games, music and a brat fry.

The center on Douglas Drive and Highland Avenue was the culmination of more than a decade of effort and numerous stops and starts.

It began with a vision by Marsha Vollbrecht of a center that would house services for all ages and provide opportunities for interaction between the age groups that would enhance not only their lives but the lives of the community as well.

It was an ambitious dream, and there were certainly many times when it appeared that the vision would fall far short of becoming reality.

The intergenerational center went through several different design changes and several different potential locations.

It seemed poised to move forward numerous times, only to run into a roadblock, a challenge or a change in direction that must have made it seem like it would never happen.

But led by Vollbrecht, the people of the

Plymouth Intergenerational Coalition persevered, determined to make this one-of-a-kind multipurpose vision a reality.

Then, when the group was finally ready to begin raising funds in earnest to construct the $4.2 million center, the deepest economic recession in decades gripped the nation and the area.

But the people of Sheboygan County stepped up and, with the help of a federal stimulus fund grant, ground was finally broken in April 2010 and, about a year later, the doors opened to this unique melting-pot center, which was given the name Generations.

The coalition was left with money still to raise to cover the full cost of construction, but fortunately the support for Generations continued, enabling the group to ceremoniously burn their mortgage over the weekend, creating a debt-free building that serves as a jewel for the city, the county and the state.

The warmth of the fire that consumed the mortgage papers for Generations Saturday could only have been matched by the warm feeling of success that Vollbrecht and the many, many members and supporters of the Plymouth Intergenerational Coalition must have felt knowing that their dream is not only a reality but a fully paid for reality.

At issue:
Generations mortgage burning
Bottom line:
Dream a paid-off reality

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