Dedication of Langone Athletics and Recreation Center Set for Friday
April 24, 2003
LEWISBURG, Pa. - Some 24 months after ground was broken, Bucknell's sparkling new athletics center will be formally dedicated in honor of its lead donor in a ceremony on Friday evening at 8:30 p.m. The Kenneth G. Langone Athletics and Recreation Center, now fully operational, provides Bucknell students one of the nation's finest multi-purpose venues of its kind.
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Ken Langone, a 1957 Bucknell graduate, is expected to be on hand for the dedication ceremony, which is open to the public and will take place just outside the center's main entrance. Langone was a member of the university Board of Trustees from 1980 to 1996. Along with his wife Elaine, he pledged $11 million toward the facility's construction. Langone is perhaps best known for co-founding Home Depot, Inc., the well-known home improvement chain, and for taking Ross Perot's firm, Electronic Data Systems Corp. (EDS), public in the 1960s.
The Langone Athletics and Recreation Center enhances each of Bucknell's 26 varsity athletics programs and greatly expands the scope of its growing intramural and recreational sports offerings. A visually appealing structure located along Moore Avenue on the "downhill" side of campus, the Langone Athletics and Recreation Center was designed to reach out to all members of the campus community, including the student body, varsity student-athletes, faculty, staff and alumni.
Three primary venues lie within the facility: the Arthur D. Kinney Jr. Natatorium, the 4,000-seat Gary A. Sojka Pavilion and the Krebs Family Fitness Center (which also incorporates the Berger Family Weight Room). Other features include a new location for the Bucknell Athletics Hall of Fame, a display of Bucknell's Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, a sports medicine and athletic training suite, classrooms, modern offices for coaches and staff and increased locker room space for varsity and recreational athletes.
One of the special qualities of the Langone Athletics and Recreation Center is the manner in which it supplements the pre-existing facilities. The brand new construction surrounds Gerhard Fieldhouse and historic Davis Gymnasium, which has been restored as a competition venue for the Bison volleyball team, as well as intramural, recreation and other varsity practice activities.
As Bucknell continues to strive toward its mission of setting the standard of excellence in college athletics, the Langone Athletics and Recreation Center becomes the centerpiece in an already impressive cache of athletics facilities that includes the 13,100-seat Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium and its newly installed FieldTurf and 8-lane track surface; the scenic Bucknell University Golf Club; Depew Field, the home of the Bison baseball team; the spacious West Fields for softball, soccer and other club and intramural activities; and, coming soon, a brand new artificial turf playing surface for the Bison field hockey team.