WALKER, Mich. — After 25 years in operation, the DeltaPlex will be closing its doors on July 31.
President Joel Langlois was not available for an interview Wednesday. However, he emailed FOX 17 the following statement, which read in part:
“We have been impacted by many circumstances which were out of our control. The effect of the Covid virus on our community was devastating, and the mandated shut down of our business for over 16 months created an extraordinary hardship. During that time, many of our expenses did not stop while we saw little to no income. The few events and facility use over that time were, for the most part, done without any expectation of rent and was done as part of our civic obligation to give back to our community during a difficult time.”
Walker Mayor Gary Carey Jr. said the pandemic hit many event venues hard and the DeltaPlex will be missed.
He added that he doesn’t know what the event center will become next but it was bought by the Visser Brothers. So, he believes the property is going from one trusted group to another.
“We’re really excited about the next evolution of that in the history of Walker,” Carey Jr. said during a Zoom interview on Wednesday afternoon. “It has been a number of things over the years. It’s been an event venue for decades, in its different phases. It’s also been a discount department store. It’s been a hockey rink. When you think too of the history, we’ve had US presidents in there, vice presidents.”
The DeltaPlex has also been home to the Grand Rapids Gold, the NBA G-League team. Team President Steve Jbarra said they have not announced where their next home will be but they too will miss the center.
“We’ve had a lot of good years there and a lot of really great memories,” Jbarra said during a Zoom interview. “Obviously, we appreciate everything they’ve done for us and for the franchise. It really was a good building for what we were doing. So sad to see it go, but we’re optimistic about our new opportunities.”