Tolson Center becomes an independent organization

ELKHART, Ind., — The Tolson Center, a staple of the once-struggling Elkhart community, has gotten new management and is about to undergo a major overhaul.

The Tolson Centre, which has served youth and adults since it opened in 1991, has finally been granted permission to become an independent, non-profit organization.

A handover ceremony was held on Thursday for the community staple which nearly closed due to lack of funding.

After more than three decades, the center is no longer run by the city but is instead an independent non-profit organization.

“There were many community meetings that took place in 2018 and 2019 to come together around saving the Tolson Center and bringing it back to what it was, which is this center district staple. -south of Elkhart. It had to be an independent organization,” said Breanna Allen, the center’s executive director.

The move is something that not only the center thinks will be more beneficial to the community, but also the mayor.

“One of the reasons public-private relationships are important is that they bring private investment with private interest and with our foundation in turning Tolson into a nonprofit and helping to fund it while enabling him to have a much broader base to build on. The nonprofit is made up of the community,” said Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson.

Along with being run by a community board, the center is also set to get millions of dollars in upgrades that will double its size and add gymnasiums, media rooms, a kitchen, an outdoor soccer field, and more.

The center will be closed in the summer and further renovations are expected to be completed by fall 2023.

A groundbreaking ceremony will also take place on May 24 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. for the new installation.

For more information on the center, click here.

A list of summer programs in the area can be found here.