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For more information, please contact

Sarah Owen
Community Relations Coordinator
City of Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department
812-349-3739; or

Jonie Gates
Marketing and Public Relations
Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital


Bloomington Parks and Recreation Partners with IU Health Bloomington Hospital at Banneker Community Center

Bloomington, Ind. – One hundred Indiana University Health Corporate Day of Service volunteers will converge at the Banneker Community Center September 14 from 8 am until noon to enhance the historic city facility’s ability to serve children and families.

According to Bloomington Parks and Recreation Community Relations Coordinator Sarah Owen, IU Health Bloomington Hospital is contributing $6,300 along with volunteers to build a Gaga ball pit and puppet theater in Banneker's backyard, plant trees, improve landscaping, and install park benches.

Located at 930 W. Seventh St., the center provides programs and activities for children, teens, and families with the mission of connecting the Bloomington community.  Having served as a community center since 1955, the Banneker’s limestone structure was built in 1915 as an elementary school for Bloomington’s African-American students.

On Friday, volunteers will also help spruce up the center’s interior. Crews will build a puppet theater and craft puppets, as well as inventory, clean and organize toys and play equipment that see frequent use during Banneker's free, weekly Toy Time, Baby Time, and Physical Fridays programs.

"We are thrilled to work with IU Health Bloomington Hospital once again for a day of service," said Paula McDevitt, Parks and Recreation Administrator. "Our two organizations have a long history of partnering to support health and wellness in Bloomington. The additions and improvements IU Health has brought to Crestmont Park, Rev. Butler Park, and Building Trades Park during past days of service, and the contributions they are making to Banneker this year, clearly demonstrate their commitment to promoting healthy, active lifestyles in Bloomington."

Robin Mendyka, Manager of Volunteer & Visitor Services for IU Health Bloomington, said, “We are honored to work in our community and to enhance our local parks so that children and their parents can benefit from spending time outdoors.”  Mendyka added that this is IU Health’s 10th year of celebrating a day of service by improving local parks and public spaces.

More information about the Banneker Community Center and its programs for teens, children and families is available at 812-349-3735.