Hope grows for Hope Fieldhouse
ROSEMOUNT — Plans to construct a new Hope Fieldhouse sports facility are progressing toward a late summer groundbreaking.
In a key step, Rosemount Planning Commission approved building plans with a 7-0 vote in April. Community support has followed.
"We needed that approval to move forward with our lending and our final architectural plans," said Dan Corley, president of Hope Fieldhouse. The group recently attained its 501(c)3 nonprofit status.
"That was a longer process than expected and there is a lot of legal paperwork that happened a long time ago, and we have been waiting these last couple of months," Corley said.
Ongoing community fundraisers have been well attended. A few local founding sponsors have stepped forward to contribute to the capital campaign.
This last week, Hope Fieldhouse got word of support from Apple Auto Group and Dakota Awards and Engraving in Rosemount. Minnesota Energy Resources recently moved its headquarters into the community and the company agreed to offer its name and sponsorship toward the concessions area, along with its foundation partner, Wisconsin Public Service Foundation.
Hope Fieldhouse is on track to teach the $1.5 million fundraising goal with the help of 30 volunteers, a core group of five members and the community.
"The feedback we have heard is truly nothing by positive and our two operational partners are doing a fantastic job of being out in the community and talking about our projects, helping us fundraise and they have really been strong advocates for us which has eased its way into a lot of corporate sponsorships," Corley said.
In the past year, Hope Fieldhouse has witnessed growing support from Rosemount Area Athletics Association parents and the community. RAAA represents 21 youth sports with 3,300 youth from kindergarten through eighth grade.
"Our first priority would be to meet the needs of the RAAA, as well as meet the needs of adaptive sports for youth that have physical and cognitive needs — those two groups would be our top priorities."
Hope Fieldhouse will partner with Dakota United Hawks that offers more than 50 programs for youth with cognitive and physical disabilities in Dakota County. The group plans to apply for grants to support the project.
Rosemount Planning Commission made a few recommendations to the plans, including adding an entrance on north side of the building, changing the building's elevation and changing the type of material in the front of the building to improve the exterior aesthetic.
"They were real minor, cosmetic things and then we will be working on getting final details of architectural plans in order to go out to subcontractors for bid," Corley said.
The outreach and response from the community of Rosemount and beyond has been unbelievable, Corley said.
"This is how our communities are supposed to respond when there is a need within the community — local businesses, community members, local associations all come together to try and solve that problem," Corley said.
Hope Fieldhouse will be leasing land from the Community of Hope Church, although the fieldhouse will not be affiliated with the church.
To follow progress of Hope Fieldhouse, go to www.hopefieldhouse.org.