by John Steinberger | March 5, 2019 2:48 pm
Hundreds gathered Tuesday for the dedication of the West Ashley Senior Center, named after former Charleston City Councilman Louis Waring, Jr. Waring, 90, performed the ribbon-cutting. He enlisted in the Navy during World War II at the age of 14. He later became a pioneer for school integration in South Carolina, served as St. Andrews Parks and Playgrounds Chairman, and served on City Council for 18 years.
Waring’s son, current Charleston City Councilman Keith Waring, spoke of his father’s dedication to education equality. He insisted that the segregated Wallace School get a new gymnasium many decades ago. When the Ashley River Creative Arts Elementary, which occupies the former Wallace site, was rebuilt recently, the gym was found to be so well-built that it was not demolished and is still used by students today. Keith Waring credits former City Councilman Aubry Alexander for being the driving force for building the $11 million West Ashley Senior Center, citing West Ashley’s growing senior citizen population.
The 16,000 square foot facility is located at 2001 Henry Tecklenburg Drive, adjacent to St. Francis Hospital. Roper St. Francis Healthcare donated the 15-acre site to the City of Charleston and paid for most of the infrastructure connections. The facility is available to residents 50 and older and includes exercise facilities and classes and a variety of social and cultural opportunities. The design by Liollio Architecture includes a fireplace and porch overlooking a wooded area.
Memberships at the Louis Waring Senior begin at $70 per year or $15 per month. Residents may sign up for memberships and classes at WaringSeniorCenter.com. Members may also sign up for free health screenings provided by Roper St. Francis Healthcare.
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