Durrwachter Alumni Center
By KIARA TINNIN
For The Express
LOCK HAVEN — Perched between the Central Pennsylvania mountains and nested conveniently on Lock Haven University campus, The Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center is a versatile space that accommodates a multitude of events.
From conference meetings to wedding receptions and more, the center remains the beacon of conference centers for the Clinton County area. This fully handicapped accessible building comes equipped with all your conference needs like SMART technology in all the ballrooms and board rooms with a sleek conference tables and plush seating.
Concepts for the Alumni Center began in 1997 and were continued through the Alumni Association, the Foundation Board members, Alumni and the Durrwachter family.
Since then the center received pledges of over $150,000 from the Alumni Association Board and Alumni in support of the Alumni Conference Center. With continuing contributions of $200,000 from Classes of 57′ and 54′, pledges continuously poured in from many hoping to make this wish come true.
Separate bequests came from Viviann S. Gummo for $508,367, Edward F. McCloskey for $288,041, Margery Brown Krevsky for $103,000 and Dr. Carol Whitcraft Fredericks for $200,000. A contribution of $1 million given by Dr. George A. and Shirley Durrwachter pushed the donations to its highest.
Three potential locations were considered for the new home of the Alumni Conference Center and the pros and cons of each site were considered until the one was chosen.
Curated on the ninth of June 2006 with the helpful support, the center is located on the corner of Water Street and Susquehanna Avenue. There is an amazing view of the Susquehanna River from its balcony, where you can see the river winding its way into downtown Lock Haven. Completed in October 2007, just in time for homecoming weekend, the Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center was unveiled and the Grand Opening Ceremony was held.
The Durrwachter Center houses the offices of Admissions, University Relations and Alumni Relations. The Foundation offices are also located in the Durrwachter Center. This area coordinates and manages philanthropic activities that support the university. University Relations works to tell The Haven’s story and share its unique advantages through publications, the news media, digital media, and brand development. Alumni Relations provides programs and services for some 30,000 graduates, who support the philanthropic goals and mission of Lock Haven University.
The Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center is the first building in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education to achieve official certification as a “green” building. In 2009 the DACC achieved its certification for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) from the U.S. Green Building Council. More than 98 percent of the DACC construction waste was diverted from the landfill. More than 32 percent of the construction materials were harvested and manufactured locally, earning this facility a high ranking.
There are seven rooms available to rent for events or meetings, that come with delectably catered food that guests will enjoy and a stocked bar and bartender. A great benefit of having an event or meeting at the DACC building is the many interchangeable rooms that are offered.
Manager of Special Events and Projects Department of Finance and Administration Tara Remick said, “People call and say ‘here’s what I wanna do, do you have a space for me’ and we make space for them. We move things and rearrange the rooms and rearrange what we’re doing to suit whatever it is that they want.”
Remick continued, “Here we’re flexible and a lot of places are just set… this is what you get. Places are like that with all of their rooms… you can’t change what you have. We can do whatever they want.”
The Poorman Ballroom is one of the larger ballrooms that can be used for wedding receptions, baby showers, birthday parties, bridal showers, or celebratory events like a ball.
The large windows brighten the finely appointed space, offering a pleasant view of lush woods and greenery that will draw guests to the charm of the Susquehanna River. This room can be changed into a lecture hall or theater style that seats 200.
Haven Homes/Hursh Conference room is on the adjacent side of the Poorman Ballroom that seats 30 – 50, offering a great view of the Susquehanna River.
The Lovette Ballroom Balcony features a charming original fireplace. This room is well suited for executive events and social gatherings and seats 32. Lytle Board Room offers a great view of Lock Haven University with its large round table seating 35 and its fully accessibly SMART mics are perfect for board meetings.
For intimate events or meetings, the Alumni Great Room is the perfect place to book your event. The room seats 15+. The Fredericks Family Library is a quiet place to brainstorm with a seating of 10. It also provides a historic side of the building with its large windows and a first and second floor bookcase. Darrow Conference Rooms is a bright and airy space perfect for mid-sized business presentations or meetings that seats 16. The Brown Family Patio is a beautiful quaint outdoor space to relax with a little fresh air and sunny that’s just outside the building with seating for 12.
Any room can be changed depending on how it’s set. The smallest room can fit as many as 50 people in a room for a conference or meeting, compared to the largest room that can fit 300 for a wedding reception or business retreat.
“This is kinda like a hub for people to come back to, everybody likes to come,” Remick said.
Community groups come back to have there events here, the YMCA celebrated it’s annual black and white ball at DACC for seven years. The Keystone Elk Country Alliance will be here in May celebrating their third year at DACC. Susque-View does an annual fundraising event and will also be celebrating their third year as well.
For Remick the events that are more community related stick out because she enjoys when they come back. Remick stated that a possible outreach to community and alumni is something that she is considering to invite others to reunite to the Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center.