Special Memories of Broadway

by Kenneth Kerr
 
Having been a member at Broadway for eighty (80) years, I have many memories of my years here. Some of my early memories took place at the old building located at Broadway and Ave. N. The entrance to the building faced south and there were over fifty steps leading to the auditorium. Once inside there were two doors that separated the foyer from the auditorium. Inside the auditorium were two rows that led to the front and a small balcony above. I think there were offices behind the front. All classrooms were below the auditorium with entrances located on each side of the stairs outside. My mother would always take my sisters and me to Sunday school and we always entered in the west side. I can remember how hot it was in the summer during church, but there were funeral fans behind every seat for cooling.

I don’t remember much about the plans for the new building, but I do remember watching construction of it. My dad was an elder and our company did all the parking lot paving, so we kept close inspection on the progress. The first Sunday at the new location was very special. After service the whole congregation gathered in front of the building and had a picture taken. Moving into the new building we began to see major growth in membership.

At our first revival meeting, we filled the auditorium and had to bring in chairs for the overflow. With this increase in membership we filled our Sunday school classrooms so we built an adult education building. This building was due east of our main building and cost one million dollars. The education building was not connected to the main building and was later replaced with the present education wing and offices. Also during this time the Youthreach building ( Carpenters Kitchen) and The Tech Bible Chair (Christ in Action) were built. I spent my high school years going to Sunday school at the Youthreach building.

I remember so many special people from my early days at Broadway. Norvel Young and Horace Coffman were the only preachers I can recall because I was young during the move. Sunday morning at church was like a family reunion. We all sat close together during the service. My mother and dad, Jimmie and Elsie; sisters, Lora Ann and Jane; aunts and uncles, Elmer and Callie Cadell, Jack and Vida Easter, Mamie Cadell, and Earl and Dot Kerr were all there.

One bad memory I have, happened in my junior high days. One Sunday night after church, a group of teenagers climbed the ladder leading to the top of the steeple, and Kay Evans’ brother Dickie Burnam fell to his death. I had been invited to join the group but had a school project due the next morning and my parents wouldn’t let me go. His death and the funeral were a terrible experience for us teenagers to go through. Good memories far out number the bad ones, however, like the trips to Camp Blue Haven and ski trips to Santa Fe.

Broadway has been such a blessing in my life. Not only was I raised here, but my wife Ann and I raised our three children here. I pray that other young families will continue to enjoy the same blessings that we have.


One Response to “Special Memories of Broadway”

  1. Carole Compton says:

    Thanks, Kenneth for sharing your memories. Hope you & Ann are doing well. We miss you guys!

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