Above, Dave, left, and his son Austin Patterson stand in front of a mural at their new business property, which used to be the local Boys & Girls Club building. Below, the Boys and Girls Club operated from this building for years. (Gary Herron photo)

Countless memories remain for the thousands of youngsters who once enjoyed basketball, arts and crafts, after-school homework and more at the Boys & Girls Club building at 4600 Sundt Road.

The City of Vision institution, which has been here for more than 30 years, had seen the building fall into a state of disrepair and rather than spend money on an upgrade, decided to sell it — yet is still making its after-school programs available here, on a wider basis, through a memorandum of understanding with Rio Rancho Public Schools.

The Boys and Girls Club operated from this building for years. (Gary Herron photo)

The building will remain, as does youngsters’ artwork on some walls and even ceiling tiles, but the Douglas and Marie Schumann branch of the Boys & Girls Club has been bought by Dave Patterson and his son Austin, longtime Rio Rancho residents, who find it ideal for their business needs.

Longtime Kiwanian and Sandoval County Commissioner David Heil, whose Kiwanis Club has supported the B&G Club here, touted the efforts of the late Schumann for countless kids’ enjoyment through the years.

“Kiwanis will still support the Boys & Girls Club,” Heil said. “I’m glad (the building) is going to good use.

“I was around when they built the gymnasium,” he recalled. “Later, in the ‘90s, we built the attachment — all ramrodded by Doug Schumann, all pretty much done with volunteers’ money and people in the community.”

There those youth opportunities in the City of Vision remain; Boys & Girls Clubs of Central New Mexico, thanks to a $150,000 grant, is channeling those activities through Rio Rancho Public Schools’ Eagle Ridge, Lincoln and Mountain View middle schools this school year.

Rio Rancho Middle School isn’t taking part yet, with massive renovations underway there, but RRPS Superintendent Sue Cleveland said she’s hopeful it will be included in the future.

There’s no charge for parents, who no longer must arrange to transport their kids to the Sundt building.

The memorandum of understanding between Boys & Girls Clubs of Central New Mexico and RRPS was unanimously OK’d by the school board at its Aug. 8 meeting.

Austin Patterson, a member of the Rio Rancho High School Class of 2013, will use most of the building’s gymnasium — where he and brothers Brady, Clay and David first learned to play basketball with their dad, along with cousins Derek and Dillon Metzgar, and many other local boys — for his growing screen-printing business, known as Ink Theory.

He’d started the business “on a whim” while attending Eastern New Mexico University, and that early success led him to bring the enterprise with him to Rio Rancho after he graduated.

It has statewide customers, and he’s hoping to take a regional and even national approach soon, with a website underway to attract more business.

Dave Patterson, also an ENMU alum with a master’s degree in business, will move in his Grounds Guys of Rio Rancho franchise, which he started in 1993.

“It’ll look like a factory in here,” Austin said.

In truth, the entire Patterson family is involved in the businesses: Dave’s wife Valerie, also an ENMU alum, “works for Austin”; Brady Patterson, like his brothers a former Rams basketball standout, is the supervisor of his dad’s firm; Clay Patterson, a University of New Mexico grad, “is a team member for both of us,” David said; and the youngest of the siblings, David, is the chief operations officer for the Grounds Guys.

According to an online post about the building’s availability, the asking price for the nearly 11,000-square-foot building was $1.4 million.

“We came to an agreement pretty quick,” David said, planning to use a portion of the land east of the building to build a few smaller buildings to rent to other small-business owners.

The transaction, which Dave said took advantage of a Small Business Administration loan, took 3-4 months and closed on Dec. 19.

Not the first agreement with schools
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central New Mexico opened its first location in the district of Bernalillo Public Schools at Santo Domingo Elementary School, which serves Santo Domingo Pueblo, in early December.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Central New Mexico has partnered with Bernalillo Public Schools to open locations at six elementary schools in the district, serving more than 300 students per day — most of whom will qualify for free membership through state Children, Youth and Families Department child care assistance.

There are plans to also open sites in the district’s middle and high schools in the future.