Wednesday, March 7, 2012  ALTON, IL –  In response to reaching maximum capacity at Community Center dances, the Center is making a few changes and also rewarding those with a membership at the same time.

Effective this Saturday, March 10 members will be allowed early entry at 6:30 p.m. into the Middle School Dance. Members will be required to show their membership card to be scanned at the door.  Doors will open for non-member entry beginning at 7:00 p.m. Should non-members arrive prior to this they will be required to wait in the lobby until 7:00 p.m. giving members a priority to get in before maximum occupancy is reached.

“We’re hoping that members will enjoy the perk of early entry to the dances with little or no wait in line,” commented John Hentrich, Executive Director of the Center. “Also we are trying to ensure that our members are not turned away at the door as we approach maximum capacity.”

Hentrich added that once capacity of 250 is reached they would reserve the last 50 spots for members who can show their membership card BEFORE exiting their parent’s car.  “PARENTS NEED TO MAKE SURE THEIR CHILDREN ARE GOING TO MAKE IT INTO THE CENTER BEFORE THEY LEAVE THE DOWNTOWN AREA.”

In order to help parents who wish to walk to pick up their children after the dance, a new policy has been developed as well.  A new “Walk-up Pick Up Zone” will be located at the Center’s parking lot at the State Street entrance. Parents wishing to take advantage of this feature should notify their children to wait for them in the new area. Parents may walk up to the State Street gate and once their children meet them and traffic has been stopped from entering the parking lot, the children will be allowed to exit with the parent.

Due to safety concerns, no one will not be allowed to cut through the parking lot from Belle Street, they must go to State Street ONLY if they wish to walk to pick up their children.

Hentrich also asked that in order to cut down on traffic congestion, those parents driving to pick up their children should not arrive earlier than 10:00 p.m. He added that the gates on State Street will not be opened until 10:00 p.m. and parking in the street on State Street is not allowed.

The Center has dances scheduled for March 24, April 14, and May 12 from 7-10 p.m. Currently admission is $5 for members and $8 for non-members, but beginning March 24 non-member admission will increase to $10. Membership is open to any students in grades 6 through 12 and may be obtained prior to the dance by visiting the Center Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Cost of membership is $20 per year for one student or $30 per year for two or more students.

Dances will continue into the summer and the schedule will be announced soon.

The Community Center is located at 200 W. 3rd Street in downtown Alton. For more information on the Center visit the website at:, call (618)465-9850, ext. 212 or email

Text @RB to 618-202-4618 to sign up for Text Alerts from RiverBender!

Print Version Submit a News Tip