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Cain Center in Athens on track to open this summer

The Cain Center in Athens has been closed for about four years and has been undergoing renovations since the fall of 2019.

ATHENS, Texas — Athens' largest indoor venue is getting ready to open this summer. 

The Cain Center is an area where conferences, sporting events, reunions, and other events were once held. It was run by the Cain Foundation as a competition venue, but the center and its surrounding facility are now run by the City of Athens Parks and Recreation Department, as a space the community can enjoy.

The property has a walking trail, a frisbee golf course, a picnic pavilion, softball and baseball fields, and tennis courts.

Once it opens this summer, city residents will be able to enjoy the new indoor pool.

"The instruction to the architect was to use all possible space and make it usable for the community, so still the same cane center from the outside but when you walk inside there will be considerable changes like that," Athens Mayor Monte Montgomery said.

Montgomery says the winter storm caused about a week of delay for the project since construction workers could not travel to get to work, but it is still on track to open by this summer.

The new indoor pool has plenty of space for families and children. The center will have rooms you can rent inside the pool area for birthday parties.

The renovations doubled the size of the workout facility. The gym will also have childcare for the community.

There are banquet rooms, office spaces, and civic meeting rooms. The Cain Center's kitchen is also being renovated and once it's done, commercial-grade appliances will be installed.

"It's a huge asset for a city our size. not many cities have a civic center this size," Montgomery said. 

The renovation is an $8 million project but the mayor says $5 million were grants to the city, so they are able to complete this project without raising Athens residents' taxes.

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