After the garage, the pavilion, the retention pond, and the sign were built, New Beginnings United Methodist Church’s new home was mistaken for a car wash.
A motorist hoping to clean up his vehicle entered the parking lot of the more than 19-acre site at 2163 State Route 37 in Brown Township during its movie night earlier this month, said Lead Pastor Dave Carter. He wasn’t sure how or why the driver thought the area was a car wash, but invited the individual to visit for events and services.
Construction of the church’s new location is all about relationships and connections, Carter said. The next phase of the development will be volleyball courts, a trail for walking and jogging, and a ministry center.
Visitors who are not church members can take advantage of the trail and courts once built. Volleyball leagues and clinics for younger people could also be established.
“It’s to be a destination point,” Carter said.
The development was designed to have an immediate impact in building relationships between the church and the community and was considered more important than the sanctuary for the congregation to use, Carter said. Its amenities will connect with the community’s overall healthy lifestyle, common interests, and family activities.
“We’re excited about this development,” Carter said.
The church will eventually relocate from its more than 100-year-old building at 385 E. William St. in Delaware, which is up for sale.
Michaela Long, a spokeswoman for the church, said there has been some interest in the facility, but no offers yet.
In 2015, motorists may have noticed a mound of dirt at the new site in Brown Township. Someone placed a cross on top of the mound, but Carter didn’t know who did it. The cross was cleared away last fall when construction began.
Since June, the church has had a worship service at the new site’s pavilion once a month. Its next service will be at 10 a.m. on July 9. The church will also offer “new ministries” such as a high-energy cardio dance class on Wednesday nights starting in July, according to a release from the church.
Community events will be hosted at the new location, including mini golf at 5:30 p.m. on July 12, paint night from 4 to 6 p.m. on July 17, and the Big Summer Blowout party on Aug. 5.
For information, visit www.delawarenewbeginnings.com.
Gazette reporter Brandon Klein can be reached by email or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.