The closing of the AGAPE Senior Center in Goessel at the end of January affected some senior citizens more than others. An impending sale of the building affects still more, as regular pool players scramble to find a place for their tables.
Senior center board president Norman Schmidt confirmed last Monday that plans for the sale of the building were underway.
“We have no contract yet, but the Chisholm Trail Bible Church is looking into buying the building,” Schmidt said. “We are kind of in a holding pattern for now.”
Approximately 25 Chisholm Trail Bible Church members meet regularly at 10 a.m. every Sunday in the building at 101 Wheat Street in Goessel for worship services, church representative Bob Schmidt of Newton said.
“We want to buy the facility and operate it as a church,” he said. “It’s all up to the title company now. We hope to close sometime mid-March.”
Formerly, the center served as a hub for daily meals, catering to elderly citizens of Goessel and the surrounding community. Since the center closed on Jan. 31, meals have no longer been served at the center, but food for shut-ins continues to be delivered by board members and volunteers.
“We are still hauling in meals for those that need it from Hillsboro,” Norman Schmidt said. “But we are trying to continue that with a licensed kitchen closer to home.”
Norman Schmidt said that the former senior center board was still functioning until the sale of the building was finalized and all other matters settled.
One matter still un-settled, is where the Goessel pool players group will move their tables to practice and host tournaments after the church takes over the building, if plans proceed as expected.
“We are kind of on the short end of the stick,” regular pool player Henry Harold Wedel said. “We have a very active group of men, and we would like to keep up our pool playing activities, but we have not been able to find a place to put our tables in Goessel.”
Wedel said the pool group competed in about seven pool tournaments from September to the middle of spring each year.
“We’ve tried talking to several different groups, but nothing has worked out yet,” Wedel said. “I have a plan in mind at Goessel Church, if all else fails, but we are open to any ideas.”
Wedel said he checked with the MORE company to see if there was room there for permanent pool table placements but was told there was too much already in storage.
He also inquired about space at the Ratzlaff Building downtown, a basement meeting room at Bethesda Home, the former Joyful Noise day-care building near K-15 highway, and the Goessel Engine Club building on the museum grounds complex.
“The problem is that we need a fairly large, somewhat temperature controlled space,” he said. “Once the pool tables are set, we really can’t move them, so it doesn’t work to put them where they need to be pushed aside for other space needs.”
Wedel said he had been told to talk with other AGAPE board members about possible financial help for the pool group, once the building is officially sold, but that had not gone well.
“We don’t have any resources to rent facilities or pay utilities,” he said. “We just want to find a place where we can continue to play pool. We hope that is not too much to ask.”