Palisades Christian Academy Opens New Gymnasium

December 22, 2021 | Education | Monte Fisher

In October 2021, Palisades Christian Academy in Spokane, Washington, held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of their brand-new multipurpose building/gymnasium.

The new addition is more than 15,000 square feet and includes two full-sized basketball courts and a large stage at one end. The gym space has also been laid out to accommodate two full volleyball courts, badminton, pickle ball and more.

“We hope to use this space for community gatherings, church nights and after-school sports,” said Monte Fisher, PCA principal.

When PCA was still known as Spokane Junior Academy, they had completed a new main school building in 2009 at a different location. It was renamed during the relocation of the school campus. Since the relocation, the school has used their bus barn to conduct physical education classes during the winter months. Now, more than 10 years after the completion of the main building, students finally have a gymnasium to play in, and a large location for social gatherings and events, which is especially appreciated during Spokane’s winter months.

During the ceremony, Fisher thanked all those who contributed to the important addition. The project was heavily impacted by Tim Windemuth, PCA development director.

“Coach Windemuth’s unquenchable enthusiasm and driving energy inspires those around him,” said Fisher. “He does this for the kids and loves every minute of it.”

Windemuth served as the athletic director of Walla Walla University for 30 years and is still finding ways to serve the Lord. Windemuth raised a significant portion of the funds for the project, led from inception, and organized volunteer groups to help keep the project on budget. When Windemuth was asked why this is so critical, he shared, “We just want to see these kids in heaven.”

Others that were thanked included Wesslen Construction, owned and operated by Jerry and Jeff Wesslen, and Cox Construction, owned and operated by Kenton Cox. The firms united their efforts, agreeing to take on the project in late 2019. The Wesslen and Cox families both attend the South Hill Church in Spokane.

There was understandable uncertainty during the months of the project. Construction costs skyrocketed, materials became less accessible, and the workforce changed dramatically. Yet, the project miraculously continued to progress steadily forward. “Despite the challenges that arose in the project, God seemed to always have an answer,” Fisher said. “When we were at a loss, God would open the doors, and it was clear who was in charge of this effort.”

Brian Harris, Upper Columbia Conference vice president for education, was asked to cut the ribbon for the building dedication ceremony. Harris previously served as the school's principal many years ago, and was heavily involved in the initial project. Harris reminisced about the challenges faced during the building of the school, and shared a few of the stories about the process more than 10 years ago.

At the ceremony, Harris reminded the audience of more than 200, why these building projects are so important “We take on projects like these to bring just One More to the kingdom.”