Soon, adults will be learning new work careers at a beloved former amusement park where generations played.
Work has begun on creating a $3 million Butler Tech adult education campus on 36 acres on what used to be part of the famed LeSourdsville Lake Amusement Park in Monroe.
The park opened in 1922 and was located along Ohio Route 4 just south of the State Route 63 interchange. Until it closed in 1999, it was last century’s version of a Kings Island, drawing generations of families over the decades.
And the bright lights that once shone in the adjacent park are now being replaced by the sparks of welding torches as workers prepare almost two dozen classrooms inside a 27,000 square-foot former recreational vehicle dealership adjacent to LeSourdsville’s former entrance.
Another 13,000-square-foot, high-bay building of the RV dealership will also be converted into a learning area for manufacturing careers.
“The name of the campus is Butler Tech’s LeSourdsville campus to honor the history,” said Scott Palmer, executive director of adult education for the county-wide career school system.
“I’ve heard a lot of excitement about this project and a lot of curiosity … that will really help us fill our classes,” said Palmer.
Construction is scheduled to be done in July with adult career training classes starting August, he said.
The new LeSourdsville Campus will be the home to Butler Tech’s Adult Education office, including student services and financial aid, healthcare and manufacturing programs.
Classes in the two buildings will include welding, advanced manufacturing, heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration and industrial maintenance. Also offered on campus will be ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages), adult literacy classes and GED preparation.
Also, healthcare programs will include medical assisting, medical billing and coding, phlebotomy, practical nursing and nurse aide training.
Butler Tech purchased the 36 acres in February 2017, and the city of Monroe plans to convert the long-abandoned LeSourdsville – which in the last years of its operation was renamed “Americana” Amusement Park - into a nature park of 50-plus acres to be named the Monroe Bicentennial Commons.
City plans for the former amusement park property include an extension of the Great Miami River Recreation Trail bike path, which covers about half of the distance within the city limits.
Jennifer Seifert, adult education marketing coordinator for Butler Tech, said the new campus allows “us to serve more adult students and educate them in career fields that are in demand in the area.”