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Christian college to name center after Morse family.

Byline: The Register-Guard

The new activities center at Northwest Christian College will be named for a family with a 106-year connection to the school.

A ground breaking ceremony will be held Friday for the new building, to be named the Morse Events Center. Many members of the Morse family, including former NCC student body vice president and current board of trustees chairman Frank Morse of Albany, will be present at the ceremony.

The ground breaking will take place at 2 p.m. at East 11th Avenue and Alder Street, where the new center will be built.

The Morse family has contributed more than $5 million to NCC's "Vision for Our Second Century" campaign, a $13 million fund-raising drive that will pay for the activities center, technology upgrades, renovations to the music building and scholarships.

The 43,000-square-foot events center, the centerpiece of the campaign, will cost an estimated $10 million.

Speakers at the ground breaking will include Frank Morse and his wife, Linda Morse. Frank Morse's great-great uncle, James Addison Bushnell, was chairman of NCC's original board of trustees 106 years ago, and since that time 10 members of the Morse family have attended NCC.

"The integration of Christian faith and the liberal arts, the acquisition of critical thinking skills and the ability to relate to others are all life-long blessings I've received from NCC," Morse said in a statement released by the college. "It's my hope that our family gifts will help NCC make a positive difference for many in the future as it has in the past."

Also speaking at the ceremony will be NCC graduate Bob Hutchins of Medford, a longtime college supporter and former board chairman. He will trace the history leading up to the construction of the new building.

The school's old gymnasium, built in 1921, was torn down in 1956 to make room for the library. NCC trustees voted the following year that the next new building would be a gymnasium, a project that took 45 years to come to fruition.

The events center will provide a venue for community and college events, including speakers, concerts and theater. It will provide a home court for the men's basketball team, space for intramural sports and physical education classes, as well as training and locker rooms, a fitness center and a batting and pitching cage.

Construction is expected to be complete by fall 2003. NCC is close to its fund-raising goal, having raised $12 million of the $13 million target.
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Title Annotation:Construction: The building will cost an estimated $10 million.; Higher Education
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jun 13, 2002
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