A two-year, multi-phase project to renovate the American Lutheran Church campus is complete a bit ahead of schedule.
In the first phase, the church sanctuary and some classrooms were updated. In this round, more extensive work was done to the campus, 17200 N. Del Webb Blvd. It included expansion of three buildings, work on the church courtyard and the addition of a fifth building.
“We got a loan to do the final phases all at once to save on costs,” said Bill Hanson, church financial director. “As we looked down the road we believed construction costs would be higher if we continued with the different phases that we planned.”
The renovation is being funded through donations from the congregation and others. The church capital campaign paid for work already completed and will be used to pay the loan, according to Mr. Hanson. The first phase was just under $1 million and the most recent improvements cost about $3.6 million, according to Mr. Hanson.
The renovations will be unveiled to the public during a two-day schedule of open houses. They include worship services 4 p.m., 8:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11 and a dedication event 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12 at the church. Following the dedication event, tours of the campus will begin at 3 p.m. An ice cream social and mission fair will also begin at that time.
“The mission fair will show people what happens and what we offer at the church,” Mr. Hanson said.
The fifth building added to the campus will be used for storage, according to Mr. Hanson. The largest addition was to the administration building, expanding it by 3,000 square feet.
“Our staff has grown and some people were sharing offices, or had none at all,” Mr. Hanson explained.
The choir rehearsal area was also enlarged, adding a dressing room, and improvements were made to the acoustics.
“Now they won’t have to get dressed in a hallway,” Mr. Hanson said of choir members.
The next largest was to the fellowship hall, increasing the square footage by 1,500 and the seating to 567. A commercial kitchen was also added and size of meeting rooms was increased.
Some cosmetic improvements were also made to the education building and church courtyard, Mr. Hanson said. The parking lot was also upgraded to meet American with Disabilities Act standards.
Church brings Mighty Moo for dedication
American Lutheran Church officials wanted to treat visitors to the church dedication to a sweet treat, and they wanted to help a local business.
Mighty Moo, the Youngtown ice cream shop, will bring its mobile shop to the Sunday, Feb. 12 dedication for the newly renovated church campus, 17200 N. Del Webb Blvd. Ice cream will be served beginning at 3 p.m. free to visitors.
“We wanted to help this struggling business,” said Bill Hanson, church finance director. “So the church is paying for the ice cream.”
Mighty Mo, 11122 W. Alabama Ave., evolved from a woman’s dream and her late husband’s desire to help her reach it.
When Eric J. White, a Phoenix police officer, needed a way to help fund his wife’s dream of becoming a toy developer, he bought an old van with the hopes of transforming it into an ice cream truck. Unfortunately, the day after he completed work on the truck, Mr. White was killed in the line of duty.
Crushed by the tragedy, his wife, Colleen, shelved the idea and let the truck sit dormant, focusing on raising her two children. However, she was inspired again years later when her children were teenagers. She restarted Mighty Moo as a living tribute to the legacy of her husband.
The handmade, small-batch ice cream turned out to be a hit. Ms. White’s success on the road led her to open the storefront shop. In addition to ice cream, it offers floats, milkshakes and banana splits amid comfortable booths and armchairs.
Ms. White also continues to operate the mobile version at outdoor parties, games and picnics.
The Mighty Moo shop is open noon-9 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, closed Sunday and Monday.