“The new air conditioning means everyone, including our gym classes, can be in there in comfort,” said Pickerill.
And it also means a new source of income for the school, which enrolls 409 students in pre-school through eighth grades, she said.
The school can now rent out the gym to non-school, youth and adult sports teams.
St. John XXIII was created in 1972 as a combined entity to serve all students in the area who were attending the local Catholics Schools of Holy Trinty, St. John’s and St. Mary’s.
While the gym holds many memories for Fenwick and St. John XXIII graduates, nobody is nostalgic about the pre-air conditioning days, said school parent Cari Hellmann.
Hellmann has had two children graduate from St. John XXIII and currently two others are enrolled in the school, which is part of the Cincinnati Archdiocese school system.
Her children are in the school band and choir, both of which practice and perform in the gym.
“When we would get all those bodies in the gym it would get hot,” she said. “Having the air conditioning will be a blessing and now we can enjoy the music and it will be very comfortable for the spectators.”
“It’s a great addition and it is upgrading and uplifting for the school,” said Hellmann.
Pickerill said the school has also added stage lights better illuminate school theatrical productions.
“Facility wise we are doing things here in leaps and bounds,” she said.