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TCH anticipates full reopening for upcoming season

Like many facilities, The Community House on Sanibel has had some challenges in recovering from Hurricane Ian. Items needed to make repairs have been in short supply, slowing down restoration.

However, officials recently announced that the facility expects to return to full operation in September, in time to host meetings and events for groups and organizations planning for the fall-spring season.

Executive Director Teresa Riska-Hall explained that the opening will happen in three phases over the summer, with partial access for some smaller events by June 15. Phase II will be added by Aug. 31.

Groups that held their meetings at The Community House in the past, including the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club and Shellcrafters, will move their activities back to the facility in the coming weeks.

The final phase — Phase III — will come on stream by Oct. 1. It will entail adding the Founders Room, which was part of the original Community House historic structure dating from 1927.

“The floodwater from (Hurricane) Ian washed out the original foundation pillars of the Founders Room, and repairing that area has been one of the most complicated parts of our restoration work, requiring the most time to complete,” Riska-Hall said.

“But we are happy to report it should be ready to go by October,” she added.

The Community House is owned and operated by the Sanibel Community Association.

“This is a very happy announcement for us. The SCA board has been anxious to get The Community House back in service and available to our island neighbors to help them return to normal,” SCA Board President Carol Townsley said. “Many groups rely on the house as a place to meet, and island non-profits rely on it for their very important fundraising activities.”

“We look forward to welcoming them back and supporting their work,” she added.

To reserve event space for activities, contact the office at 239-472-2155.

The Community House is at 2173 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel.

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