MODESTO — More than 1,000 people turned out for Sunday's opening of Kidspace, a Modesto church's 44,000-square-foot facility that includes arcade games, a rock climbing wall, a cafe, a nursery and a fitness center.
The House Modesto formerly Calvary Temple Worship Center converted the building on its campus that once housed the Calvary Temple Academy into Kidspace. The academy closed several years ago because of declining enrollment.
Glen Berteau, the church's senior pastor, said Kidspace will provide a safe, wholesome place for preteens and their parents. The facility is open to everyone, including those who do not belong to the church, which has 7,000 to 8,000 members.
Kidspace includes two auditoriums and a dozen rooms that can be rented for birthday parties and other events. The House will hold Sunday school and children's church in the facility.
Berteau thanked his congregation for its financial support and commitment in making Kidspace a reality. He said in an interview that the project cost several million dollars.
He told the audience that Kidspace is one more way in which The House can reach those who don't know Jesus Christ.
The ceremony included Mayor Garrad Marsh and his wife, Dallas, and Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson as well as church board members.
The muggy, triple-digit heat did not dampen the spirits of those who stood in a line that stretched several hundred feet for their turn to tour the facility.
"This is an awesome experience," said church member Jose Padilla, 39, as he waited with his wife, Jennifer, their two daughters and other family members. "As hot as it is, a lot of people are here."
For more information about Kidspace, including the cost of a fitness center membership and room rental rates, call (209) 529-7346.
Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2316.