**Check out this week’s (April 16th, 2021) Dells City Journal for this story**
This past Monday, April 12th, members of the Dell Rapids Community Center Committee, along with members of the Dell Rapids community, made the 80-mile trip to De Smet, South Dakota to tour their event and wellness center.
The De Smet Events & Wellness Center features a large exhibit hall, theater, walking track, wellness center, meeting rooms, commercial kitchen, lockers, showers and separate rest rooms, recreation office, and reception area.
Rita Anderson of the De Smet Development Cooperation showed the Dell Rapids group around the facility.
“The older generation are some of our busiest users,” Anderson explained. “Our older retired community members are constantly walking every day. We have the walking track that is free to use every day and have 30-40 walkers a day if not more.”
More than just exercise takes place at the De Smet Event & Wellness Center. “It has been neat with retired people looking for things to do. They started classes and all sorts of activities,” Anderson said. Mystery dinner theaters, speakers, cards, and several other events are held at the center. On average 50 events are held in January and February alone.
“The De Smet Event & Wellness Center also hosts a concert series on Sunday afternoons where the older population takes part,” Anderson added. “There are just so many uses. Memorial services, lunches, the list goes on and on.”
When asked if the De Smet community is happy with the facility, Anderson said “wholeheartedly. It does my heart good when I hear the comments from people asking, what did we do before we had this building and this facility? When I see the skeptics that are up there using it now is great. There are very few naysayers about it now. Everybody uses it. There is always something going on in the community giving them a reason to use it.”
The Dells City Journal will continue to follow the process of the project. To show your support for the community center, reach out to your Alderman for your designated ward or express your support at upcoming council meetings. If you would like to become a member of the committee advocating for the community center please email your name and contact information to DRCommunitycenter@gmail.com and a member of the committee will contact you. With community support, this plan can become a reality.
Tammy Chamley | Editor – Dells City Journal