CSU, Chico News

Barn Raising at Patrick Ranch Begins on April 13

Date: 04-05-2012

Kathleen McPartland
Public Affairs

Members of the community and California State University, Chico students and faculty are stepping in to help build a three-story, 2,500-square-foot barn during the Patrick Ranch Blitz Build on the last three weekends in April. The first wall will be raised on Friday, April 13, and a short program will be held at 11 a.m. to celebrate the occasion. Representatives from Patrick Ranch, the University, community participants and students will be on hand to mark the beginning of the project.

The new structure will greatly increase the public’s access to the ranch. It will serve as a museum, an educational facility and a visitor’s center. The barn raising was chosen as CSU, Chico’s 125th Celebratory Community Outreach Project and is part of its 125th anniversary celebration. When the University was established in 1887, the Patrick Ranch was a hub of the area surrounding what is now Chico.

To honor this history, numerous departments across campus and several segments of the community are collaborating to make the Patrick Ranch Blitz Build a success. Such a huge undertaking would not be possible without the extensive collaboration, contributions, and partnerships among the University, the community, the Far West Heritage Association, Chico Noon Rotary, Valley Contractors Exchange and Tri Counties Bank.

Ben Juliano, associate dean for the College of Engineering, Computer Scienceand Construction Management, will welcome guests and introduce speakers including Dave Rush, vice president of the Patrick Ranch Museum Association; President Paul Zingg, CSU, Chico; and Melanie Bassett, president of Chico Noon Rotary and a representative of Tri Counties Bank.

“The participation of non-students in the building itself is unique for us in terms of past community service projects,” said Lauren Cowden, student project manager from the Department of Construction Management. “The barn will be constructed over three weekends, with two shifts per day of approximately 25 students and 25 community volunteers from our community partners. The scale of the project is challenging and very exciting.”

The money for all of the logistics—tents, wiring, bathrooms, and food—is being donated. Valley Contractors Exchange, Chico Noon Rotary, and Tri Counties Bank are each providing financial contributions. In addition, volunteers from these groups are preparing and serving two meals each day and providing multiple teams to assist with construction. Howard Slater, Howard Slater and Sons; Pat Conroy, Conroy Construction; and Gage Chrysler, Modern Building Company, will provide on site mentoring and guidance to the students and community volunteers.

Historically, constructing a barn or other large outbuilding was too difficult for one farmer, so the entire community would come together to help. The Patrick Ranch Blitz Build is keeping that tradition alive. After the construction management teams and community volunteers are finished raising the barn, there will still be a need for volunteers to paint and provide finishing work. Interested people can email Manager@patrickranchmuseum.org or go to the website at http://www.patrickranchmuseum.org/. For more information on the project, contact Jim O'Bannon, Department of Construction Management, at 530-898-1323.