With modern upgrades, the Friends of Sydenstricker Schoolhouse plan to make the 85-year-old building more of a center of community activity.
Photo courtesy of Friends of Sydenstricker Schoolhouse
The 85-year-old Sydenstricker Schoolhouse has a new lease on life. Long looked after by the Upper Pohick Community League, the outdated building that lacks running water, bathrooms or a modern heating and cooling system now has a dedicated, separate organization to oversee renovation fundraising.
The Friends of Sydenstricker Schoolhouse formally incorporated in June 2014 and achieved 501(c)3 tax-exempt status in August.
“The new organization can really be completely focused on raising money and funds to preserve and maintain the building,” said Friends of Sydenstricker Schoolhouse president Lisa Becker. The Community League still owns the schoolhouse and has some board crossover with the Friends organization.
“We have a long-term plan, trying to make the building a more usable place for the community,” she said.
The new organization’s first fundraising goal is $100,000, which will help cover updating the electrical system, insulation, heating and air conditioning.
Becker has already seen donations increase since the organization became tax-exempt. “We know people held off because they really wanted to get that tax deduction. Now it’s a win-win,” said Becker.
The Friends of Sydenstricker Schoolhouse will hold yard sales of the tax-deductible donations on Nov. 8 and 15 from 8 a.m.-noon, with all proceeds going to the schoolhouse updates fund. For more information on making a donation or using the schoolhouse space, visit www.sydenstrickerschoolhouse.org.
The schoolhouse is located at 8511 Hooes Road in Springfield, across the Sydenstricker Methodist Church.