W - HS Community Cleaning the tile

Volunteers cleaning tile. The makeover of the historic building took a little over a month to finish.

HIGH SPRINGS – The High Springs Woman’s Club building has a fresh coat of paint.

Renovations to the inside of the historic New Century’s Woman’s Club building in High Springs are finished, after beginning July 10. The work was done by organization members with aid from spouses. Together, they logged in 693 volunteer hours to complete the project just in time to host their first event in the revamped building.

High Springs Chamber of Commerce members were the first invited guests as the Woman’s Club hosted the Tuesday, Aug. 13 chamber meeting in their light and airy building. In honor of the special event, chamber members were treated to a light dinner, dessert and drinks on the round tables.

“It was a labor of love,” said Carole Tate, Woman’s Club spokesperson, referring to both the chamber dinner and the renovation project.

Woman’s Club members earned money through several fund-raising projects, and made monetary contributions of their own to help pay for items needed to complete the renovation project. Events like Pioneer Days and city-wide yard sales helped raise the funds, Tate said. “We have been saving up to do this work for some time. It was at the very top of our list of items we wanted to address,” she said.

As an example of the work that had to be done as part of the renovation, “11 volunteers scraped carpet and two layers of tile off of the floor. Jack Phillips planned the restoration, ordered all the materials, did the repairs to the ceiling, walls and wood trim and built the alcove shelving,” Tate said. “He has been a tile-setter for 50 years, and with the help of G. Cox, Tony Sellmen, Ernie Adkins and Toby Pugh, Jack set all our wood grain floor tiles in a herringbone pattern. He and his wife, Windy Phillips, spray painted the walls and ceiling, and Windy painted the doors, moldings and other surfaces. They used all original wood for the repairs to the walls and trim as well,” she said. “This renovation project would not have been possible without Jack Phillips.”

The 1925 building now has a new lease on life, Tate said. The Woman’s Club plans to host a Brunch Membership Drive Sept. 5 at 10 a.m. Anyone interested in finding out more about the 55-member club and the many services they provide locally, nationally and internationally are invited to attend.

An open house is also planned for Sept. 15, from 1-3 p.m. “People can stop in for a visit and see the newly renovated building,” Tate said. “It is a great opportunity for our members to show off all their hard work and invite people to see the lovely, updated building,” she said.

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