If you are born in Indiana, one of your first gifts would probably be a basketball. Cheering on high school teams is a passion unrivaled by other states in the United States. High Schools in Indiana have some of the largest gyms in all of the USA so they can root on their local hometown teams. Of the top 12 largest high school gyms in America, 10 of them are in the state of Indiana!
Yet, the landscape is stark for homeschool basketball and volleyball teams. Currently, there is NO FACILITY in the state that focuses on a growing portion of our population when it comes to high school sports! At the same time, it is a well-documented fact that families are choosing to homeschool in dramatically greater numbers. Homeschooling is on the rise in Indiana with over 35,000 home educated kids throughout the state. The majority of homeschool enrollment is in the Central Indiana area, and it continues to grow. At the same time, youth sports have exploded across the US into a $15.3 billion industry. According to figures from WinterGreen Research, the nation’s youth-sports industry has grown by 55% since 2010.***
Also, within our local community, there is a lack of indoor court space for basketball, volleyball and pickleball players to encourage them to live active and healthy lives. In 2019, Howard County was ranked 80th out of Indiana’s 92 counties in health outcomes, which measure how long people live and how healthy they feel. It finished 81st in health factors, based on behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors and physical environment.****
At the same time, stress for both students, parents and families are on the rise with the political, spiritual and health issues in our country. In 2020, our communities and families hit an eight decade low of 47% in membership in houses of worship throughout the US. As isolation from others has had a major impact on our society and COVID-19 wrecked our economy and health, Kokomo hit an 11 year unemployment high in 2020 at 10.9%!
With all of this in mind and as our drivers, our team was led to launch The Rock Sports and Ministry Complex in September 2021!
The Rock is a Christ-focused community, sports, and retreat center in Kokomo, Indiana.
The Rock is focused on three areas of impact:
The Anchor – A healthy living café and classroom/meeting space for community and homeschool groups
The Arena – A high-quality, multi-court, indoor sports facility for homeschool teams, club sports, and community groups that encourages healthy, active living through a fitness gym and competitive sports, such as basketball, volleyball, and pickleball.
Facility Designs and Plans
After researching several similar, existing facilities in other cities over the last three years, architects and board members are developing a site plan, including building designs for a 150,000 square foot multi-court sports facility that will include:
12 basketball courts with a championship court
20 volleyball courts
15 pickleball courts
bathrooms, locker rooms, and refs changing room
fitness/training center - healthy living cafe
classrooms - concession stand area
Also, an 8,000 square foot retreat and community facility, including spaces for study, prayer, worship, creative arts, and group gatherings. The Rock is actively seeking property that will accommodate all of these plans.
Court Rental – Basketball and volleyball courts will be available to rent on an hourly basis and also for tournament play. Pickleball courts will be available on a reservation system and monthly membership structure.
Performance Fitness Center – Fitness Center will be available to facilitate healthy living with a monthly membership fee and to train athletes.
Café – Café offering coffee and healthy alternatives for athletes and the general public. Open Mon – Sat various hours to meet the needs of visitors and the community.
Sports Instructional Classes including Pickleball 101, Volleyball 101, Basketball 101, Fitness 101, Weightlifting, etc.
Sports Camps including Basketball and Volleyball.
Opportunities and plenty of space for tournaments.
Community Outreach including assisting individuals and families in the community with creative arts, prayer, physical needs, spiritual development and sports.
Healthy Living Classes including nutrition, financial management, stress relief, etc.
Physical Education Classes including General PE, Pickleball, Basketball, etc
Free Community Offerings – Classrooms will be available for free on a reservation, Open Court time will be offered on a regular basis, One-Day Passes for pickleball and fitness will be available.