In 1933, the Hamilton County Board of Education approved construction of this building, to include eight rooms and an auditorium at a cost of $35,000. The building was completed in the summer of 1937, and was named Nathan L. Bachman Elementary School in honor of the late U.S. Senator “who was a consistent champion of public education and whose residence was in the community”. Changes to the original building structure included the addition of indoor restroom facilities in the early 1950’s, the building of two additional classrooms for the kindergarten, and the cafeteria addition in 1954. Facilities were modernized in 1975 and again in 1984. By 1999, Hamilton County Department of Education made plans to build larger school buildings to serve our growing community and relinquished ownership of Bachman Elementary to the Town of Walden. In 2000, the Bachman Center Council, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, leased the building from Walden to create a community center. Named Bachman Community Center, the Center’s mission is to foster a sense of community by supporting programs and events that reflect the needs of all residents of Walden’s Ridge, while continuing to preserve our historic building as a community resource. The building was placed on the National Historic Register in 2001. In 2002, BCC received a matching grant from the Community Foundation of Chattanooga, as well as contributions from civic organizations and private donors, to replace the badly leaking roof. In 2007, new gutters replaced the old leaky ones. Work continues on the restoration of the historic building, supported by donations and fundraising.
Today, the building donates space to our local Girl Scout troops, The Mountain Arts Guild, theater groups, student groups and senior social groups. We also offer a free, public library. To generate income, BCC leases studio space for art, photography, exercise and physical therapy, dance and we offer a home to Mountain Fellowship Church. We also manage a thrift store on site, which is staffed by volunteers, stocked by donations and provides almost 50% of our operating budget.
Our thrift store is always looking for extra hands! Please click below for more information about volunteer opportunities.