About 200 supporters of Calvary Lutheran High School attended a ground-breaking ceremony Sunday for a $2.1 million project that will add an auditorium, gym and classrooms to the school.
"We're not building this school just and only for you," said the Rev. Joshua Knippa of Faith Lutheran Church. "We're building this school for your grandchildren."
The school started in 2005 with nine students, and has grown each year since. It has about 70 students this year, and Executive Director John Englebrecht expects about 90 next year. The expansion will allow enrollment to grow to between 150, he said.
The new construction will add three more classrooms, plus a gym, auditorium and space that could be used as a kitchen/dining area in the future.
Calvary already has its own baseball field, but the addition of a gym will allow it to have its basketball and volleyball "home" games at home. It
currently uses gym space at Trinity Lutheran School for home games.
The auditorium will be used for drama and music productions, as well as chapel.
A double-sided stage, with storage underneath, will be for use in the auditorium or gym. The gym will have wooden floor, bleachers, baskets and volleyball floor mounts.
The school currently has 10,000 square feet, which includes seven classrooms, offices and a commons area used for chapel, group presentations and other activities.
The current facility might be cramped, but it's large compared to the space the school rented from Lincoln University before moving to its current location off Missouri 179 near Rt. B.
The capital campaign to fund phase II of the construction will run simultaneously with construction, which could be completed by the end of the year.
"It's a little bit of a step of faith," Englebrecht acknowledged, but he said that some "nice pledges" have already been made. The construction will also let people see what their donations are being used for, he said.
Officials at the event joked that the ground-breaking for the first phase of construction was three years and three days ago, and featured similar cold and rainy weather.