HISTORY OF THE PORTAGE LAKES KIWANIS CIVIC CENTER
The Portage Lakes Kiwanis Civic Center, located at 725 Portage Lakes Drive, Akron Ohio, is a non-profit corporation, fully qualified under section 501c (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Members of the Portage Lakes Kiwanis Club founded it on October 31, 1973. It is a separate organization from the Portage Lakes Kiwanis with a separate Board of Directors. On February 13, 1974, the Kiwanis Civic Center acquired approximately nineteen (19) acres. This property included five (5) lots on Canova Avenue which are contiguous with a rather large parcel on the east side of the Old Barge Slip Canal (what is now a feeder canal from East Reservoir) as well as the parcel on which the Civic Center is located. In 1976, a 40 x 80 pole building was constructed on the property. It was used exclusively to store the Santa Claus sleighs and all items related to the Portage Lakes Kiwanis Santa Delivery program. It also served the Portage Lakes Kiwanis as a staging area for Rose Remembrance Day distribution and delivery. In 1985, a major expansion of the Civic Center facility occurred. An addition was put on the building for the storage of the sleighs so that the entire 40 x 80 area could be used as a meeting hall.