Presbyterian Community Center ends era serving Smoketown

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by Brooke Hasch

WHAS11.com

Posted on December 31, 2013 at 8:45 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 1 at 9:49 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – The end of the year marks the end of an era for a local community center in Smoketown.

The Presbyterian Community Center (PCC) officially ceased all operations Tuesday after a long fight to keep it open. Chairman Grover Potts says the center had operated for years in the red and simply ran out of money after 115 years.

"We can't keep the doors open on the bet people will come," Potts said.

The board closed the community center back in August, but spared the Children's Development Center. The decision to close the children's facility at the end of the year came as a result of the Sheppard Square revitalization project which eliminated the majority of the center's clientele, about 1,300 children and adults from the neighboring complex.

"They left almost overnight, within a few short months," Potts said.

The center partnered with United Way and other agencies to help find displaced families new avenues for childcare and other youth programs.

"Certainly we're not happy about what happened but we want to celebrate what's been going on there for 115 years. It's made a marked difference in the lives of literally thousands of children and thousands of residents," Potts said.

The PCC happens to be the place where Louisville's own Muhammad Ali began his boxing career, where he learned to box. Potts says he's shown the building to several interested buyers, hoping they'll continue the center's legacy.

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