Grand Opening for College Place ABC

August 01, 2003 | Doug Johnson

For many years conference leaders and constituents have realized the inadequacies of the Adventist Book Center (ABC) building in College Place, Wash. All of this changed on April 27, 2003, with the dedication and grand opening of a new ABC building located across the street from the old store.

Nearly 150 people gathered on a beautiful Sunday morning to dedicate the new structure, which also provides offices for the development director and College Place trust services officer for Upper Columbia Conference (UCC). Jere Patzer, North Pacific Union Conference president, and Max Torkelsen II, UCC president, a College Place official and the manager of the ABC gave short speeches as part of the big event. Several mentioned that the primary purpose of the building is to provide services to members in the southern portion of UCC.

“The building was completed free of debt,” says Wayne Searson, UCC trust services director. “The monies came from the ABC, properties that were gifted to the Upper Columbia Corporation for this type of project and the Upper Columbia Conference.”

Some of the expense of the building will be offset by not having to rent office space for the trust services and development personnel as well as income from the rent of the old ABC store.

The new ABC branch store provides three times more space for retail sales than the old store. With this added space, there is a greater selection of Bibles and Spanish materials, as well as couches for reading and visiting. To increase the non-Adventist use of the store, Kate Gotch, the ABC branch coordinator, plans to offer Bibles at a 20-percent discount for several years.

“Already the public has commented on the improvement,” says Herman Schreven, ABC manager. “They especially appreciate the comfortable and relaxing atmosphere of the store and the 30 parking spaces.”

Several former College Place ABC branch coordinators, including Maxine Rogers who served in that capacity for 28 years, publishing representatives, former ABC managers and many others were on hand for the dedication and grand opening. Many commented on how the new building is a nice addition to the town of College Place and represents the Adventist church well to the community.