Workers last week were engaged in final touch-up projects in preparation for the grand opening of the city’s community center on Thursday, Jan. 23.

An $18 million project, The Center at District56 is located at Civic Center Drive and Big Horn Boulevard, just south of Elk Grove Boulevard.

This 32,178-square-foot building also includes space for the new location of the Senior Center of Elk Grove as well as the city’s first veterans’ hall.

The Citizen on Jan. 3 took a tour of the facility, which has been undergoing work since 2018.

During that tour, Cambria Pollinger, the city’s community center coordinator, said there will be no more delays in the project’s opening. The project was twice delayed in its opening, with the city’s last plan to open the structure being last fall.

“There absolutely isn’t (going to be a delay),” she said. “We’re just finalizing the finishing touches, getting some inspections done, and then we’re ready to move in,” she said. “I know that they’re checking off a lot of their cleaning. So, construction-wise, we’re done.”

Jodie Moreno, the city’s community events and special projects coordinator, shared details about the upcoming grand opening during the Citizen’s tour of the building.

“(The grand opening) is going to be from 4 to 7 p.m., and we’re going to show off the facility as if no one’s seen it before,” she said.

“It’s going to be kind of an open house concept, where people can come in, they can take tours, they can see the veterans’ hall, they can see the Senior Center of Elk Grove and they can come into the center, which is the big community center in the middle there, and see how the space can be used.”

Moreno added that the facility can be rented for trade shows, conferences, weddings and other events.

Among the other features of the building are a commercial kitchen, a pantry, a conference room, a café, public art, fire tables, fire pits, and an event space that the city is overseeing. A contracted vendor will operate the café.

Mark P. Hite, an officer with Marine Corps League Detachment #1238, told the Citizen that he is uncertain when this veterans group will be moving into the veterans’ hall portion of the building.

“We haven’t received an official move in (date) yet, but we’re getting close, because they’re having keys made for us,” he said.

Senior Center of Elk Grove Assistant Director Christine Cuddy, told the Citizen that the senior center will maintain longer hours during the grand opening.

“Open house (at the new location) will be from noon to (7 p.m.) on Jan. 23,” she said. “We’re going to have a lot of demonstrations. All of our instructors are going to be in there. We’ll have cardio drumming, we’ll have aerobics, we’ll have yoga, we’ll have all (those) types of things.”

The senior center’s final day of operation at their current location on Sharkey Avenue will be Jan. 17. This new facility will open on Feb. 3.

In addition to opportunities for guests to tour the building, the grand opening event will include entertainment, appetizers, desserts and wine toasting. The program will also include speeches by members of the Elk Grove City Council.

Moreno invited the community to participate in the grand opening.

“Come look at the building and enjoy three hours of entertainment city-style,” she said.

Pollinger noted that the center’s regular operations will begin on Jan. 27. The facility will be open Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.