Location of the Church Service for Sunday, November 26, 2017 Due to our on-going roof problems, the Church service this Sunday, November 26, 2017 will be at the Barkhamsted Senior Center on West River Road in Barkhamsted. The service starts at 10:00 am and we hope to see you there! It is expected that future services will be held at the Senior Center for the immediate future unless there are unexpected developments. Check here for the latest news.
It is expected that the service for Sunday, December 3, 2017 will be held at the Town of Barkhamsted Highway garage assembly room. This building is located on Route 44 about a quarter of a mile north of the Barkhamsted/New Hartford town line, near the entrance to the RRDD recycling center.
When will our church building reopen? We don't know for sure. The process has taken longer than we had hoped for. As we write this in mid-November 2017, the engineering work is still being wrapped up and probably will not be completed for a month or more. The project may not be put out to bid until late December 2017 or sometime in January 2018. Having the structural issues corrected is the top priority and hopefully that work can be started in the winter of 2018. When the structural issues are corrected, we presume that the church building will reopen. There is some indication that the work to correct the structural problems will take several months, and this is AFTER we have the contractor selected.
Currently we are looking into how we will get through the winter and the danger presented by the weight of snow on the roof. A decision has not been made, but one option is to have the entire roof covered with a special tarp that has a slippery surface and that would shed snow.
Photo at left- our Sunday, October 15, 2017 church service was held on the portico of the church. We cannot use the interior of the building due to roof framing issues.
Sunday services have been held at the Senior Center, but we were not able to use the Senior Center this Sunday. Each year during Riverton Fair weekend, the Barkhamsted Seniors have a big tag sale fund raising event and needed the Senior Center building to support that effort. So we had our service back at the church, and fortunately the day was fairly warm and the rain held off.
It was nice hearing the church bell ringing again! Sunday services will return back to the Senior Center starting October 22.
Photo above - Church tag sale on October 14, 2017. With the Riverton Fair drawing a lot of traffic, what better day to hold a tag sale to raise funds for our church? This is the third year we have done a tag sale. The location is on West River Road in Pleasant Valley and a lot of people going to the Riverton Fair stopped in to see what we had for sale. Fortunately the rain held off, and we made $416 for the church.
Help us out! Save your tag sale items for next year. We collect stuff all year, so keep us in mind.
We got the state grant! - October 4, 2017 Today, October 4, 2017, Church restoration committee chairperson Leslie Cosgrove announced that our Church has received preliminary approval of our $50,000 grant application by the State of Connecticut, Department of Economic and Community Development from their Connecticut’s Historic Restoration Fund.” The grant will be formally approved when all the paperwork is completed and signed, which should be done soon.
This is a matching grant, so our Church will need to raise at least an additional $50,000 to complete the work. The work involves critical structural framing repairs to the roof of the church building, and also includes other necessary repair work such as re-shingling the roof of the building. The church building has been closed since late August 2017 because of structural deficiencies discovered by engineers hired by the Church to look at the integrity of the building.
The work required to fix these issues and to re-shingle the roof of the building and complete some additional tasks is expected to cost a significant amount. The actual cost will not be determined until the proposed work is put out to bid and a contractor's bid is accepted. The process of getting bids and selecting a contractor are the next steps. The Church will need to cover up front 100% of the cost of the project, and the $50,000 grant funds will be paid to the Church after the project is completed.
It is our hope to complete the project in the next several months, although that schedule may be a little optimistic. When the work is done, the church building will be reopened for Sunday services. Until then, services are being held at the Barkhamsted Senior Center on West River Road. Services are at 10 a.m. and all are welcome.
Meeting of the Congregation - September 17, 2017 On September 17, 2017, our Church held the Sunday service at the Barkhamsted Senior Center on West River Road in Barkhamsted. After the service, a meeting of the Congregation was held at the Senior Center. At that meeting it was decided to continue to hold our 10:00 am Sunday Church services at the Barkhamsted Senior Center for at least the immediate future. Our Church building in Barkhamsted Center cannot be used until roof framing deficiencies are addressed. At the meeting, this effort was also discussed, specifically a need for a fundraising plan and a need to develop options for temporary repairs or permanent repairs as soon as possible.
Photo above - meeting of the Congregation on September 17, 2017 at the Barkhamsted Senior Center.
Old Home Day -- September 10, 2017 Old Home Day activities began with the Sunday worship services at 10:00. Because of the roof issues the service was held outside the Church on the Portico. Following the service, the traditional group photograph of all participants was taken on the steps of th Church portico. After the service we enjoyed a Pot Luck luncheon...what a nice warm sunny day for all the activities!
Following the lunch, a we hiked about a half mile down to the west side of the Barkhamsted Reservoir and visited several historic sites including the location of the original meeting house built in 1784 (dismantled just after the Civil War) and the Center schoolhouse and cemetery.
Photo above left...the September 10, 2017 "Old Home Day" service held on the step of the Church. Photo above right...the traditional Old Home Day group photo - September 10, 2017.
Roof Issues Update -- August 2017 In late August of 2017, the engineering firm GNCB discovered additional structural issues in the Church roof framing and recommended that the building not be occupied until these issues are corrected. Therefore, regular Church worship services will not be held in the Sanctuary until further notice. We very much regret these developments, but in the interest of safety feel we must follow the recommendations of the engineers. Stay tuned here for updates on the location of future worship services.
Roof Issues Photo at left- our Church. Look closer and you can see a big tan tarp covering part of the roof. We have a leaky roof, and worse- the roof framing has issues. This tarp lasted about a year, now (late 2017) it is pretty much in tatters.
In 2016 we hired a structural engineering firm to pinpoint the framing problems. That investigation is now in process. The first recommendation was to make some critical temporary fixes to shore up the problem timbers. This was completed in December 2016 -- just in time to prevent any damage from the winter snow load!
This church is an old structure that is on the National Register of Historic Places, so we need to make permanent repairs to the framing that will preserve as much of the building fabric as possible. That goal is what we are currently working on.