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One year later, Oasis moving to new location
Will close June 16 - 20 to move

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[June 10, 2014]  LINCOLN - For those who have been constantly involved with the relocation of the Oasis after the devastating fire on June 21, 2013, it may seem like it has been a very long year. But, from an observation point it might be said, “Wow, they accomplished all this in only a year?"

Accomplish it they have! The Oasis announced this week that they will shut down their temporary home at St. John’s United Church of Christ on June 16. Between the 16th and 20th they will officially be moving into their new location in the former Rusty’s Clubhouse on the city’s far west side.

On June 23rd, one year and two days after the fire, the organization will open the doors of the new location to the Oasis membership.

An official celebration of the new location with a Chamber ribbon cut and open house has been set for Saturday, July 12th from 1 to 4 p.m.

It was on Friday, June 21, 2013 at approximately 4:20 p.m. a storm with heavy lightening was passing through Logan County. In the city of Lincoln, business owners around the downtown square reported hearing a loud noise and some said they felt the earth move as a bolt of lightning arced and hit the roof of the Oasis.

Located in the heart of the city, and sharing walls with other local businesses, the prospect of a fire at the Oasis held the possibilities of dire consequences for an entire city block. Fire units were called in from Sherman, Atlanta, Middletown, Emden, Latham, Lincoln Rural, Beason and Hartsburg.

The city of Lincoln Fire Department led a battle against the fire that included multiple sources of water going onto the Oasis as well as adjoining buildings. Water tankers from other areas worked a methodical relay, filling and dumping water into portable holding ponds to keep everything flowing seamlessly.

The fire raged, with flames often visible from more than a block away, and smoke filling the downtown area and beyond.

It took several hours and a large number of people, but by 7 p.m. the worst was over. Firefighters stayed on the scene throughout the night watching for flare-ups and hot spots.

In the morning light, the devastation to the Oasis looked pretty bad, but the downtown business area had otherwise been spared.

For the board and executive director of the Oasis, the knee-jerk reaction was to say, “We will rebuild."

In September, Ellen Burbage wrote in the Oasis newsletter an account of the days that followed the fire and the decisions that had to be made. Time was spent finding a temporary home so that much needed services for area seniors could continue.

The board had to deal with insurance adjusters, structural engineers, and many others.

Even though the hope had been to repair the Oasis, the board soon found there were many hurdles that were going to be insurmountable in the end. With the deluge of water used at the fire, and the time of year being warm, mold quickly developed inside the building. The west wall of the building was unstable and was going to have to be shored up before anyone could really start restoration. In addition, they learned the building was not up to current city building and safety codes. Up to this point, they had not been required to upgrade to meet city code because the codes were adapted after the building was built. However, now that they were going to rebuild the interior, those codes would have to be met.

A special committee had been formed to investigate the Oasis options, and soon after all this was discovered, it was determined that the more financially responsible thing would be to check into buying or building a new site.

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In October, the committee announced they would be purchasing the former Rusty’s Clubhouse on the city’s far west side. The committee said they had looked at all the options before making their decision. To build new was going to be extremely costly, and they opted to look at what was already available.

There were several locations in Lincoln that had some potential. But with each one there seemed to be some kind of draw-back, until they reached Rusty’s.

As the committee looked at the building, it had much to offer. Plenty of space for growth, restroom facilities that were already ADA compliant, easy entry for wheelchair traffic, and for some the most important thing was it had tons of parking.

But even with all it had going for it, the site wasn’t exactly perfect. A former restaurant, the building contained an industrial sized kitchen and was partitioned off into dining areas as well as a sports bar.

On February 24, 2014, volunteers gathered at the new location and conducted a sale of restaurant equipment and other fixtures. Then on March 13th at the monthly potluck, executive director Dom Dalpoas announced that Webster Construction would be re-designing the interior of the building to fit the needs of the Oasis group. The blueprints for a new floor plan were on display and included office space, a workout room, computer lab, gift shop, dining area and a social area complete with fireplace.

At that same potluck, it was announced that Fricke Calvert Schrader Funeral Home would be donating the exterior signage for the new location.

With the announcement this week that the Oasis will be moving into the new facility starting on the 16th and will open its doors to the membership on the 23rd, a long year is quickly coming to a triumphant end.

Be sure to mark your calendars for July 12 when the Oasis invites everyone to come out and celebrate their new home. The Lincoln Logan County Chamber of Commerce ambassadors will hold a ribbon cut at 1 p.m. and the open house will then run to 4 p.m.


Past related stories

06/22/2013 - Blaze causes considerable damage to Oasis Senior Center

Photo albums from June 22, 2013
Album 1  |  Album 2  |  Album 3  |  Album 4
Album 5  |  Album 6  |  Album 7  |  Album 8

09/03/2013 - A FIRE TALE
The Oasis will rise from the ashes
By Ellen Burbage

02/25/2014 - Sale of restaurant equipment and accessories will benefit Oasis building fund
Album 1  |  Album 2

03/15/2014 - Webster Construction to remodel new home for Oasis -- Fricke-Calvert-Schrader to donate new lighted sign

03/15/2014 - Photo albums from 03/15/2014
Album 1  |  Album 2  |  Album 3

Nursing Homes

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