Multi-purpose center planned

Published 12:39 pm Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Patrick Henry National Memorial recently announced plans to construct a 5,100-square-foot multipurpose center, resulting in the Charlotte County Board of Supervisors earmarking $2,500 in the proposed 2017-18 county operating budget to support the organization’s efforts.

“I’m proud that it’s in the district that I represent,” said Aspen/Phenix Supervisor Haywood Hamlet.

He said although Red Hill has a Brookneal address, the facilities are located in Charlotte County.

“Many of you may know us as Red Hill,” said Patrick Henry National Memorial Development Coordinator Myra Trent. “We are embarking on a new education and event center at Red Hill.”

Red Hill is known nationally as the home and final burial place of Patrick Henry.

“We are about keeping the spirit of the voice of the revolution alive through engaging educational programs,” she said.

The new Eugene B. Casey Education and Event Center is slated to include a portico-style covered porch, a lobby entrance featuring historical exhibits and a catering kitchen. The center will include a lecture hall and a classroom.

“We have been given $1 million through Mrs. Eugene B. Casey and she wants us to build this center,” said Trent.

Red Hill does not receive any state or federal funding.

According to Trent, many of the programs held at Red Hill are often conducted outdoors and when weather doesn’t cooperate, the activities must be canceled.

“We feel like this education and event center will help,” she said.

Hamlet said the construction of the center will fill a void in the county.

“In this area, it’s not a lot of places to have the square footage to hold functions like this, so I look forward to doing all I can to help this become a reality.”

As a historical site in the county, Red Hill serves as an educational tool for students. “I feel like it’s extremely important for the children of Charlotte County to visit Red Hill and learn about Patrick Henry,” said Trent.

She said the organization does not charge Charlotte County school groups a fee to visit and tour the facilities.

“Thank you for all that you do for Charlotte County schools. I just appreciate the hospitality so much,” said Division Superintendent Dr. Nancy Leonard.

According to Red Hill’s website, the project is currently in its planning stages and with no projected completion date listed.

“We are very thankful for the support … We appreciate that,” said Trent.