Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

November 11, 2013

Open house tops off school project

Barry Porterfield
Pauls Valley Democrat — All the planning and work and community support is about to pay off for a Pauls Valley school project now complete and ready for its showcase opening.

Naturally PV school Superintendent Darsha Huckabaa is all smiles and a bit giddy when she talks about the fast approaching opening of the newly renovated auditorium at the local junior high school.

The community and PV alumni alike are all invited to come and check out the auditorium during an open house scheduled for Sunday afternoon, Nov. 17.

“I’m just excited and proud for this project to now be a reality,” Huckabaa says, while describing the renovated auditorium as a “showplace.”

“We want to show everything off,” she said.

“We’re going to have a come and go open house. That way people can walk up on the stage and check it all out. People will get the opportunity to go throughout the auditorium.

“This gives people a chance to sit down and visit and reminisce about the old days. We just want to show it off.

“I’m just so proud of it.”

In a way the project has been decades in the making.

The junior high building once served as Pauls Valley’s high school, which means many local alums received their diplomas right on this very stage,

The auditorium later went unused for many years before it was brought back to life because of this large renovation project.

As a result there’s naturally been a lot of interest from alums who have jumped at the chance to get an early peek at the auditorium’s transformation.

“We just wanted to make sure this was something our community and alumnus could be very proud of,” Huckabaa said.

“We’ve had a lot of alumnus stick their heads in there just to get a peek,” she said, adding at times it brought some tears from the PV grads. “That was the stage where they graduated from.”

The come and go open house is set from 2 to 3 p.m. Nov. 17, immediately followed by tours of the recently remodeled Grimmett Fieldhouse from 3 to 4 p.m.

Both projects, along with a renovation of the Wacker Park gym, were part of a bond issue approved by overwhelming support during an election in April 2012.

With the football fieldhouse already being used and the auditorium set to open soon, Huckabaa said the gym project is expected to be completed later this fall.

Huckabaa said she and the local school board will be the first to acknowledge the projects wouldn’t be a reality without the support of the Pauls Valley community.

“I want the community to know how much we appreciate their support to make all this possible,” she said.

Once that support was given during last year’s election the superintendent is quick to point toward the school board and all the work members put in for the planning of these three large building projects.