DMACC’s Athletic Director BJ McGinn gave Banner News a tour of the brand new Student Activity Center at the Boone campus. Needless to say, it was incredible. A gracious donation of $250,000 from Fareway helped to pay for this $6.5 million addition which gives DMACC athletics a much needed overhaul to its athletic facilities. The new Student Activity Center is also available during the morning to all students and staff, with the potential for more student programs to be expanded upon for individuals not involved in athletics.
This new activity center allows DMACC to be something that they haven’t been before and that is now up to speed with the rest of the competition. During the spring season DMACC has been performing at a high level across all sports which Banner wrote about previously. Several teams have posted national rankings through the course of the year and these programs are having this success without the same advantages most other colleges have to offer.
A new basketball gym is already drawing interest to host AAU tournaments and showcases. This has the potential to bring revenue to the entire city of Boone, as it would mean families would stay in hotels and eat at local restaurants (or McDonalds, but there’s no judgements here). The gym has the space for two full-sized basketball and volleyball courts. The new facility also features batting cages that come down from the ceiling which means both softball and baseball will have some great indoor practice options. A brand new golf simulator will allow the golf team to get reps during the winter months. A sports medicine lab that features areas to get taped up, stretched out, as well as the space to perform physical therapy. On top of all this is a state-of-the-art weight room complete with squat racks, TV’s that can display workouts and everything and anything needed to get some exercise in.
One key issue that this solves was that a majority of DMACC’s athletic programs had to spend extended amounts of the offseason practicing away from campus. Men’s and Women’s basketball would have to drive outside of town during winter to practice. Iowa winters are no joke, so this was a huge safety concern for BJ that is now resolved. The golf team was at a major disadvantage to schools that don’t have to worry about winter conditions. Previously, there just simply was no practice during winter unless they went to the North Grand Mall and used its golf simulator. Now instead of having one 20 minutes away, they have one right across the street. Not to mention the Softball program had to practice at the fairgrounds where players got to share time with mice. Those are undeserving conditions for any team, especially one that produces the results that women’s softball does.
During the tour, there was a common theme throughout the new activity center. DMACC got their money’s worth. Have they passed up the competition’s facilities? BJ responded they had been deliberate with the budget.
“We actually went level with them,” he said. No one would be able to tell from the excellent quality that has been added to the Boone campus.
These high end centers are featured in most if not every college and university that has high performing programs, even some that don’t have the same athletic results that DMACC has been producing over the years. High schools around the state of Iowa alone were better equipped than the Boone campus were before the new additions. With this change DMACC can train at the same level of the competition they’ve been playing against.
For more information about the Student Activity Center, you can visit: https://www.dmacc.edu/foundation/Pages/Boone.aspx
Photos courtesy of Micki Anderson.