BY JESSICA STEELEY
Clarkston News Staff Writer
After several years of renovation work, Bay Court Parks’ Brady Lodge held its grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony last Thursday, Oct. 5.
“It turned out better than we could have possibly imagined. It came together very quickly this summer – asphalt, parking lots, new concrete paths, paint, electrical. It’s been a lot of blood, sweat and tears from a lot of people, but it’s really, really come together,” Independence Township Parks, Recreation and Seniors Director Derek Smith said.
Smith explained the first phase of renovations has been complete, but hopes to continue improving the building with the addition of a heating and cooling system and running water.
“We’re really happy with the building in its current condition. It is a great programmable space for a good six or seven months out of the year. We’d like to go 12 months with it eventually,” he added.
Several community members and leaders attended the ribbon cutting including township Supervisor Pat Kittle, Clerk Barb Pallotta, Treasurer Paul Brown and Trustee Andrea Schroeder. Several chamber members and members of Daughters of the American Revolution were also there, as well as Clarkston Community Schools Superintendent Dr. Rod Rock.
“It’s remarkable this community is so interested in its history and maintaining it,” Rock said. “It’s really remarkable and great for our kids to have that sense of history.”
Kittle is thankful the township had the ability to do this and the board decided to invest money into a great asset for the community.
“It’s just been a labor of love, built in 1929 and completed in 2017. It only took us 88 years to fix it and $530,000,” Kittle joked. “I can’t wait until we have our first community function where people get to enjoy the grandeur this hall has and just enjoy all of the natural beauty.”
The first major community event to be held at Brady Lodge is the Clarkston Area Chamber of Commerce’s Holiday Market on Nov. 11, Smith said.
“It’s going to be kind of our first major kick-off event for the facility and we’re really excited to partner with them,” Smith said. “By next spring it will be open for rent to the public. Then, we’re going to start having some markets and art fairs and those sorts of events starting in the spring of 2018.”
Smith said they want to hold off on winter events at the lodge for now, until they can get an idea of what kind of temperature control they can put in.
“To fully utilize the building and to make sure it stays as nice as it is now, we’re going to have to start controlling the climate in the not too distant future. We are investigating furnaces to keep the cold and the moisture out,” Kittle said.
For more information on Brady Lodge and its future events, call the township’s Parks, Recreation and Seniors department or visit their website.