Senior activity/recreation center opening in Hampton

By Monroe Roark
Times Correspondent

The Bear Creek Senior Activity Center and Recreation Center celebrated its official opening Monday with a ribbon cutting, signifying the end of a decade-long wait for many residents in Hampton and the surrounding areas.

Members of the Henry County Board of Commissioners, the City of Hampton, the Henry County Council on Aging and Henry County Parks and Recreation gather for a ribbon cutting at the entrance to the Bear Creek Recreation Center. Special photo

The facility has been in the works for a long time, spending years on the drawing board as the county suffered the effects of the national economic slowdown and more than one location was considered before it was constructed on a five-acre site at 56 McDonough Road in Hampton.

The joint center is the first of its kind in the county. It has an overall size of 20,800 square feet, with about 9,900 square feet dedicated to the Senior Activity Center and 6,100 square feet for the Recreation Center. A shared fitness area makes up the remaining 4,800 square feet.

The Senior Activity Center features its own covered, drive-up entrance; lobby/lounge with gas fireplace; billiard room, card room, craft room and multi-purpose room; full-service kitchen and dining room; adjacent outdoor patio area; restrooms and staff office; and direct access to the shared fitness area.

The Recreation Center will include a separate entrance into its own lobby; two large multi-purpose activity rooms; a kitchenette with microwave oven and refrigerator; vending area with ice machine; restrooms; office and break room; and direct access to the shared fitness area.

The shared space includes an aerobics room, fitness area and indoor walking track. The fitness area includes three treadmills, two ellipticals, two recumbent bikes, a six-piece push/pull circuit, a five-station multi-stack system with cable crossover and a selection of free weights.

Design and construction of the facility totaled just over $3.5 million, below the $4 million set aside in the county’s SPLOST budget.