New gymnasium up to Roy voters

Charlie Denison

Photo of Roy Gymnasium courtesy of Jody Simons

A group of Roy women are using a grassroots approach to replace the old gymnasium.

For the past two years, Jody Simons, Jeanine Pendergrass and others have pursued a new gym in Roy and – as of last week – their hard work is being put to the test.

“The Roy School Board unanimously approved the resolution for a bond,” Simons said. “Ballots went out last Monday. Now it’s up to the public to vote.”

Simons said people seem enthusiastic about the new gym, but there are also some naysayers.

“Some people say ‘there are only so many kids, why do we need this?’” Simons said.

Pendergrass has an answer.

“With any business you need to reinvest in your future and your infrastructure,” she said. “That’s how you keep it vibrant and alive. The same goes for the gym.”

It’s time to reinvest, Pendergrass added, whether school enrollment grows or not.

Simons, however, is optimistic Roy could see some growth here in the near future.

“We have a lot of new young couples getting married and moving back to the area,” Simons said. “There are a lot of little ones around now and there is potential for more little ones.”

“We aren’t just doing this for our kids that are in school now,” Pendergrass added. “We’re doing this for the next generation.”

Danyce Stulc, a 2013 graduate of Roy High School, said it’d mean a great deal to her if she got to see her children play a volleyball game at the gym, something she never got to do herself.

“Because of the gym’s condition, we never hosted a home volleyball game,” Stulc said. “I don’t know what it’s like to play at home.”


Building a better future

According to Simons, there are many issues with the gym, and they aren’t the first ones to bring it up.

“There’s been a need for this for probably 20 years,” Simons said. “We’re just the group that’s pushed it the furthest.”

Such action is badly needed, as there is a long list of issues with the current gym.

“First of all, the gym is not of legal size and the floor can’t be finished,” Simons said.

“It’s not safe for the spectators and it’s not safe for the athletes,” Pendergrass added. “There’s not much room for seating.”

Simons agrees.

“If you’re sitting in the folding chairs along the wall, your feet are on the sideline,” she said.

The gym can only hold 180 spectators at the very most, Simons added, and that’s a stretch. The new gym the group is proposing can hold up to 500.

“We are looking at two different types of construction: steel and concrete,” Pendergrass said. “That’s what the bond is for: two steel metal siding panels with foam insulation.

The estimated cost for the new gym is $1.96 million, Simons said

“We want to leave Roy better than the way we found it, ”Pendergrass added. “We want to do this for the vibrancy of our economy, community and school.”

“We also want to make the town more appealing.” Simons added.

Roy voters have until Tuesday, Jan. 23 to get their ballots turned in.

“We need a majority vote to have it approved,” Simons said. “If approved, architects will move forward with drawings and construction would begin this summer. We expect it’d take about 18 months and hope to host our first game in the fall of 2020.







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