St. Ann Center Celebrates at Mortgage-Burning Event

St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care celebrated reaching an important milestone at a special ceremony held Friday, June 22, at the Bucyrus Campus.

After 35 years, the mortgage on the center’s Stein Campus, 2801 E. Morgan Ave., has been paid off, thanks largely to the generosity Of Carl and Karen Kitzinger. Longtime St. Ann Center supporters, they jumpstarted a campaign to retire the mortgage in January by offering to pay half of the amount needed. “Carl and Karen have supported St. Ann Center from the very beginning, allowing our programs to grow,” said Sr. Edna Lonergan, the center’s founder and president.

The Kitzingers were among the first donors to the capital campaign that led to the opening of the Stein Campus in 1999. Later, when Sr. Edna was assessing the feasibility of building a second campus, “Carl and Karen came through the front door with a $2 million check,” she said. “This beautiful place, the Bucyrus Campus, is the gift they have helped give us.”

After a ceremonial “mortgage burning,” Linda, a client at the Bucyrus Campus, shared a poem, reading, “The clients at St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care have different abilities that make each one special. They are faced with many challenges daily, yet they still manage to find a way to wake up every morning and come to St. Ann Center and share their lives with one another.” The all-ages audience was entertained with spirit-lifting songs performed by the four-year-olds from the Bumblebee classroom.

The celebration concluded with the dedication of the Bucyrus Campus’ 24th Street entrance as Kitzinger Lane. “Now, as we all come in and out of the campus, ” Sr. Edna said, “we will see this street sign and remember our special friends.”

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