It has been a long time coming. That’s what many residents who once enjoyed the Booker T. Washington Community Center would say. After about six years of being closed, the Community Center has reopened.
The Center in Historic Pleasant Hill has been around since the 1950s, and people in the community would use that space for parties, get togethers, sewing, and other activities.
“We’ve had so many individuals come in ranging from 2 years old to 80,” said Tedra Huston, Executive Director for Macon-Bibb County Community Enhancement Authority, the organization selected to manage the facility and coordinate the programs. “A lot of the elders have come back. They remember walking those halls when they were in middle and high school themselves.”
Part of the recent renovations included adding old pictures of the people who used to go to the Community Center decades ago. People have gone back to take pictures with their pictures of when they were younger.
Not only has the reopening of the Center brought back nostalgia for many, but it has also brought new opportunities for new generations.
“We’re trying to be a true resource for everyone in Macon that may need us,” said Huston.
The Community Center offers several programs for all ages. One of the biggest goals the Center is trying to accomplish is to be a vital resource for the youth who live in the neighborhood. They have after school programs for middle and high schoolers that helps them with schoolwork, and teaches them lessons they won’t learn in the classroom, such as financial literacy, helping them find jobs, and even changing a tire.
The Center is also home to the Southern Center for Choice Theory, C-Qul, Pace Center for Girls, Melanated Communities, the Eric Foundation, Mosaic Development, the Booker T Washington Reunion Committee, the Vexiom Group, and the Community Enhancement Authority. Additionally, AARP and Central Georgia Technical College will host regular programming.
“Pleasant Hill is an historical black community. It was created by professional African Americans in the 1800s. It stemmed on education, art and culture,” said Huston. “As African Americans, so many things have been wiped away from our history, so when you’re able to bring something back and people are able to remember it and walk the halls, it just does something to the spirit of the community.”
To find events, sign up for organizations, or rent space you can visit, www.bookertwcc.com.
The Booker T. Washington Community Center is located at 404 Monroe Street Macon, Ga and it is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday by appointment. You can also call the office at (478) 305-7463.