About the building and the owners:
In 2020 Kisatchie High School celebrates its Centennial.
The building and the surrounding area are co-owned by Kisatchie Community Center (KCC) and Kisatchie Masonic Union Lodge #379.
The current board members for Kisatchie Community Center are: Delores Deason, Jeaniene Taylor, and Charles Boles.
Kisatchie Community Center is a non-profit corporation in the State of Louisiana. KCC has been serving the community of Kisatchie since 1964.
The building was last used as a school in 1962.
The building was later leased to a furniture manufacturer and also a ceramic studio.
The building was the subject of a Master’s Thesis by Tamara S. Miller in 2009. The thesis is entitled: Kisatchie School Documentation: Saving a Part of the Past. Ms. Miller was a student at Northwestern State University.
The building was also the subject of an article by Rickey Robertson in 2013. The article can be found at: http://sfasu.edu/heritagecenter/7774.asp. Mr. Robertson is a resident of Peason and has collected numerous archives for the Peason Community and Southeastern Sabine Parish.
About the restoration plans:
It is planned to restore and re-purpose the building as a combined Rural Museum, Conference Center and Retreat. The first floor will serve as a museum and conference center area. The second floor will provide lodging.
Visitors will be charged a fee to view the museum. Building users will be charged a fee to use the building for various gatherings such as weddings, reunions, and community activities. Visitors wishing to utilize the lodging area will also be charged a fee.
It is anticipated that members of the local Kisatchie and Peason communities, former students, and relatives of prior community residents will provide memorabilia to be preserved and displayed in the museum area. Kisatchie National Forest and Ft. Polk will be requested to provide displays for the museum area.
The proximity of the building to Kisatchie National Forest and Kisatchie Falls should provide the opportunity for youth summer camps to be conducted at the restored building. The planned restoration of the building includes second-floor lodging area to be used by the summer camp attendees.
It is also anticipated that the grounds around the restored building will provide the perfect setting for annual festivals. The festivals would include music, food, and arts and crafts. The festivals would provide future fund-raising opportunities for the maintenance and operation of Kisatchie Center.
The preliminary plans shown on the Future Plans web page have been created and drawn by Terry Kile.
Previous efforts to secure and preserve the building for future restoration have been undertaken by members of the Kisatchie Community including Julian Ray and W. E. Dowden.
This Historic Building was designated one of Louisiana’s Most Endangered Properties by the Louisiana Trust for Historic Preservation. The Louisiana Division of Historic Preservation recently awarded KCC a grant to make an application to add Kisatchie High School to the National Register of Historic Places. The National Register of Historic Places is the United States federal government’s official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures and objects deemed worthy of preservation for their historical significance.
About the fund-raising plans:
A local contractor has estimated that it will cost $600,000 to $650,000 to restore the school to reflect the floor plans shown on the Future Plans web page. It has been estimated that an additional $50,000 will be required to pay for architectural and engineering fees. Hence, a goal of $675,000 has been established for donations to adequately restore this building.
Currently, donors are only being asked to provide a non-monetary pledge toward the restoration goal of $675,000. Those making pledges will be contacted at a later date and asked for a monetary donation.
Kisatchie Community Center is classified as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization by the Internal Revenue Service. The tax ID number is 11-3734968. Donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.