A Place for Us. A Place for You.

Join our journey to establish a public, year-round, indoor gathering space to enhance engagement, recreation, and the arts for the Missoula community.

Every Person:




To maximize opportunities that foster curiosity and healthy, creative activities for all in a safe and welcoming environment.

Community Voices

The design and purpose of the Currents Center for Recreation and Creativity (CCRC) is the result of hundreds of conversations with a diverse array of Missoula individuals and organizations that represent a range interests. While the “big picture” focus is on wellness through social services, sports and the arts, the other end of the spectrum is a community space that creates a sense of belonging, or simply a place of respite.

Close up of Sam Jones smiling

Sam Jones

Students will come into Flagship and express that need to just have some place where they feel like they can go and just be themselves.  Especially with this vulnerable population having some sort of open area where they can explore their own interests and dive deeper into the things that they are interested in would be perfect.  In terms of barriers for students who aren’t able to access these different opportunities, a lot of them have parents who are super busy.  A lot of them don’t get off work until 7 or 8 o’clock, so even after Flagship they won’t have anything to do or anyone to interact with…. This is definitely a super, super vulnerable age. Students are going through a lot of different changes, students are exploring their own interests, and they’re finding a little bit more about who they are as a person.  So just to be able to have that community and just be able to meet other people who might have different interests as them or even have the same interests and be able to be in one specific place, makes them feel they have a place in Missoula, have a place in their community, just be able to be themselves and be happy. 

I would define community as the safe place where you can be yourself and be accepted.

Close up of Sherene Ricci smiling

Sherene Ricci

I would say community at the bare bones of it means having a peer group, it’s having people around you have a commonality with. There’s a lot of community within community, especially in a vibrant place like Missoula. We have a lot of different kinds of people here and that’s what makes it special. I find a lot of communities overlap with each other and that’s when the magic happens. You find a group of people, and they’re your crew and then you overlap with another crew so now you have a bigger crew and now you’re doing something fun together. I’m lucky to feel I belong to a lot of different kinds of communities. That’s something that is special in my life. I’m a person with a disability so I’m part of the adaptive community, and I’m part of the cancer-fighter community, I’ve had cancer three times and I’m winning, and that means that I have a lot in common with a lot of different kinds of people that I maybe would have never met before and never thought of as my peer group or didn’t know that I needed that as my peer group… now we have each other that we can rely on and… learn from each other and teach each other and that is really special and it’s been essential in my life and that’s got me over a lot of hard things and gotten me moved  to a place where I’m proud of the differences that I have in society and I’m proud of who I am and it’s because I have an awesome community that supports me.

Shared experiences, whether they’re traumatizing or fun or spiritual or artistic or sporty, definitely bond people together.

When I think about Missoula it’s not just the beautiful river or the wonderful mountains… there’s something about Missoula that brings out the best in people…. You’re more likely to get help from a random stranger here… pretty soon you’re all neighbors in this town.

The type of space that I think Missoula would need right now and thrive on can include a lot of things… but what me and my community would use it for would be adaptive sports. That could be pickleball or wheelchair basketball, maybe some theater stuff or… dancing or goal ball would be fun.  I like sports that are inclusive that you can do whether you have a disability, or you don’t, whether you have your vision or you don’t, or whether you can hear clearly or not. Things anybody can do, but we can do them together, kind of level the playing field and have a way to include all members of society. I think those are the most successful activities and then we all get something out of it.

I really like this project because there’s a big effort being made to include all levels of society and all of Missoula’s awesome, colorful, wonderful people.

Close up of Laurel Sears smiling

Laurel Sears

We have a long season — that’s winter season, and smoke season, of course, or sometimes it’s too hot or too rainy or whatever — where we need to find indoor activities… we would just love an indoor space that is open and available that allows for community to connect.  Maybe even a space for a café next to an indoor play area… especially for pre-school age children during the day…  As much as people are generally very accepting… restaurants and coffee shops are not meant for children.  They really need a space that’s for them to run around.   I’ve talked to so many moms where it’s an isolating experience to have pre-school age children.  It doesn’t really feel like there’s a place for you in the world.  So, just having a place that’s really meant for community, all ages, and feels like a place that’s designed for families and that’s open during the day.  Often, we have programs that start at 3 pm for after school, but those hours from 8 am until 3 there’re not that many options that are super affordable, low key and accessible for everyone…. I feel the support is there [for families] from businesses but I think this center could be exciting because I feel the support could also come from the city… we have cool city run park spaces but they’re only available for a short amount of time and outdoors… Climate change is happening, and we need more indoor space that is available to everyone all the time.

I work at the university as an adjunct in the Dance Program.  I teach educators and I teach young children.  I’m always looking for space for movement to be part of a larger curriculum and way of thinking about how we do life…. I’m interested in how we move our bodies and how do we stay healthy.

Missoula is this mid-size city and it has a lot of the things that are trying to grow. I feel like this center could be a place not just for everyday families but for gathering, for arts and culture events.  The university provides an amazing space but it’s not always available. More just brings more.  Missoula wants to grow.  It doesn’t always have the space.  This is an opportunity for that….  It could be something the whole city sees as a big boon.

The magic thing about Missoula is that there is a lot of heart in this town and a lot of people living their passion.  A lot of places that I’ve visited and lived don’t have this sense of place that Missoula has…. That really grounds you in what Missoula is…. We unplug, we connect to each other.  Our town has this ethos where we care about the arts, we care about community, we care about each other.

Community is reciprocity.  I give to you, you give to me, we have a shared space.

Close up of Greg Peters smiling

Greg Peters

Just reserving gym space in the winter is always a challenge. If we don’t get in our request in time there’s always a need to find alternative spaces. We’ve kind of shuffled around all winter because of scheduling.

Part of the philosophy of the Old Boys Soccer group is it’s a multigenerational game, you’ll see a wide range of abilities….  we have a lot of international students who are on exchanges here.  The group is always seeking to find ways for others to join in…. So, in the Old Boys Soccer community we have players ranging from the mid-30s all the way to 70 years old…  Got some father figures and some brother figures.  it is far beyond just the soccer playing. It’s really about the camaraderie and finding a group of people that are joyful. It’s not just about the soccer, it’s about afterward.  It’s an experience much beyond the sport. The sport is what got us all there but its turned into a lot more than that. 

Community is something you create… Like with our Old Boys Soccer group, I love talking to people and hearing what’s going on with them in their lives.  It’s like a dialogue… It’s an exchange of ideas and listening, talking, sharing experiences. That’s community for me.

The Converge Foundation does not take the task of creating a land acknowledgement lightly. We are guided by the Native Governance Center’s article on “Beyond Land Acknowledgement: A Guide.”1 We are guided by Damian Chase-Begay’s article2 on Native land acknowledgements. We are guided by Leonard Traveller’s comments3 addressing a need “to come together and move forward.” To that end, we are actively seeking cultural leaders to join us in creating a land acknowledgement that meets the high bar set before us. It does not end there. We are also seeking assistance in creating an action plan highlighting the concrete steps The Converge Foundation can take to support Indigenous communities within the scope of its mission. This plan will include information and research on the land, but it will primarily focus on specific, impactful actions we can take.