Mill Race Center proving to be significant asset for community

Columbus’ senior center has reached five years in its latest location, and there are plenty of reasons to celebrate that anniversary.

The primary one is that Mill Race Center, at 900 Lindsey St., is going strong. The $7.8 million non-profit facility has about 2,200 members, and the center has seen a 24 percent increase in members’ participation in the past year. That shows that people mostly 50 and older view the center as a great resource for keeping active.

Mill Race Center offers mature adults multiple ways to stay on the go, such as a variety of classes and programs, arts and crafts, discussion and service groups, Columbus Regional Health fitness center and the Pitman Institute for Aging Well.

The increased participation is a great sign for the 59-year-old organization dedicated to providing opportunities for Bartholomew County’s mature population. So is the fact that the Pitman Institute, which opened last year, already has hosted a national conference.

Another reason to celebrate is that Mill Race Center has made a connection with the broader community. While the center focuses on people who are age 50 and older — the fastest growing age segment in the county — about 1.5 percent of the center’s members are younger than 50. Also, the center is used for a variety of public and private events, and its multipurpose room can be rented by the public.

What the senior center’s five years in its new home have shown is that the public-private investment in Mill Race Center was a sound decision. All those who worked for years to make the new senior center a reality are to be commended.

Mill Race Center is a place of great involvement and activity, and the community is reaping dividends.

That is cause for celebration.