This construction timeline was assembled to document all the construction projects at the Hungarian Hall, including any betterments, refurbishments and general improvements made since 1921. If you have any additions, corrections, comments or pictures please contact Susan.Fleury@wellandhungarianhall.com.
The Hungarian Self Culture Society was incorporated in 1924, in Welland, Ontario. That same year, the property on the corner of Park St. and Hellems Ave was purchased for $500.00 with borrowed funds and which were fully paid back before construction even started. With additional contributions from the executive and the Plymouth Cordage Company, construction began that summer. By the end of 1924, the brand-new Hungarian Hall building was erected at a cost of $5,215.00 and was dedicated on January 1, 1925. Through the help of generous donations from friends and family along with wisely managed funds, the loans for the building were paid in full within 3 years. Thanks go to Mihaly Hajmasi, President and his executives.
In spite of financial constraints during the great depression, a bowling alley with 2 lanes was installed organized by Istvan Diamond and his executives, in the basement, at an engineered cost of approximately $3,200.00. Over the next 10 years, the bowling alley generated over $12,768.85 in income for the Hungarian Hall.
A major addition to the main building of the Hungarian Hall was completed in October 1952, on the Park street side, which included the small hall, the kitchen, office, boiler room and washrooms. As of October, they had already paid out $12,887.97 and took out a loan for an additional $8,500 with 6% interest. On November 22, 1952, Mr. Ellis Morningstar, MPP, Welland, was there for the ribbon cutting ceremony along with Diamond Istvan, Reverend Novak, Jakus Laslo, Kovacs Miklos, Hidvegi Andras, Hidvegi Irene (daughter), Reverend Stephen Horvat, Pastor of Our Lady of Hungary Church. The total cost reported in the July 1953 minute book was $25,817.57 under the presidency of Laszlo Jakus and his executives.
On Sept 6, 1954, a ceremony was held with the membership to celebrate the dedication of the new flagpole at the HSCS, on the front lawn of the Hungarian Hall under the presidency of Geza Kertesz and his executives.
In September, a memorial monument was erected on the Hungarian Hall’s property with the full support of the Hungarian churches and organizations, to honour our heroes of the first and second World Wars. Each year on the last Sunday of May, a wreath is laid in their honour amidst prayers and the singing of hymns. Laszlo Gerencser and his executives.
The Hall purchased 300 place settings of china from the Buffalo China Co., in Buffalo, NY for a very nominal fee. They also purchased 300 5-piece place settings of 18/8 stainless steel flatware.
At the October 1st meeting, the blueprints for the extensive remodelling plans of the Hungarian Hall were submitted to the executive at a cost of $2,500.00 under Andrew Kovacs and his executives.
The Hall received a grant from the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship for $107,246.00 and began renovations. An additional grant of $9,350.00 and a $10,000.00 donation from the Hungarian Christian Association, went towards the purchase of new furniture. These major renovations included the replacement of the heating system, the addition of central air conditioning, upgrading the electrical wiring, lowering the ceiling, new lighting fixtures, removal of the wall between the large and small halls, refinishing the floors and reconfigured the stage. The total cost of this renovation was $108,000.00 and was made possible with the dedicated work and countless hours of many volunteers under Andrew Kovacs and his executives.
The addition of a large vestibule and new windows and doors, extended the size of the hall. The cost of this expansion was $53,990.00 for which a grant of $15,000.00 from the Provincial Ministry of Citizenship was received. The dedication of this addition was held on Oct 31st and was attended by various politicians and special guests including the daughters of the first two presidents of the Hungarian hall – Mrs. Mary Mocsan (Alexander) daughter of John Ferenczi the first president, and Mrs. Martin Farkas, daughter of Michael Hajmasi, the second president. President Andrew Kovacs and his executives completed this work.
A new roof was installed under the presidency of Steve Maj and his executives. The work was completed at a cost of $35,767.17 (including GST).
The eavestroughs were replaced and the majority of the cost was paid by the insurance; the Hungarian Hall paid for the $500 deductible. Steve Maj and his executives.
The exhaust and ventilation system were upgraded in the kitchen/office area to meet fire code by Andrew Kovacs and his executives. The cost was partially paid for by insurance.
There was some exterior work done to add vinyl siding to the exterior walls of the original section of the Hall, to match the new addition (as per Sept 10 minutes) at a cost of $4,265.69. The floors upstairs were also sanded and varnished. Andrew Kovacs and his executives.
An upgrade to the Ladies washroom was completed in 2008. It was paid for by a $15,000.00 grant and the balance by the Hungarian Self Culture Society. The total cost was $26,000.00 + tax. New window coverings were made for the upstairs ballroom. These new drapes were paid for by the Hungarian Hall and a donation from the Hunor Dance Group. Work was done refinishing the upstairs floors along with some electrical upgrades. Additional cabinets were built in the kitchen at an approximate cost of $1,400.00. A new bar fridge was purchased for the small hall and the old fridge was moved to the downstairs bar. All of these renovations were completed by President Andrew Kovacs and his executives.
The upstairs bar in the small hall was refurbished under President Olga Varga and her executives. A new counter was added, some plumbing was upgraded, a new floor behind the bar and a new front facade were completed. The Hungarian Hall paid approximately $20,000 for this refurbishment.As per the May minute books the total cost to install new curtains was $3,955.00. To help pay for this we received donations from the Hunor Dancers, the Hunting & Fishing club, and the Seniors Club worth $2,950.00. The balance of $1,005.00 was paid by the HSCS. This was also completed under the president Olga Varga and her executives.
Under the presidency of Klara Kovacs-Szabo and her executives, the Kitchen ovens were replaced at a cost of $26,000.00 and were paid for by the HSCS. An additional upgrade to the entire kitchen was completed to bring the air vent ducts, the oven exhausts, the fire extinguishers, and exterior doors up to code at that time adding tens of thousands of dollars to the overall cost. Unfortunately, the renovations were started before the grant submission, so we did not qualify. In addition, the upstairs main floor hall floors were stripped and revarnished.
A new elevator lift, and front washroom were installed in the main lobby, under the presidency of Klara Kovacs-Szabo and her executives. The total construction cost was $62,000 and was paid for by a grant and the Hungarian Hall. They also partially replaced the weeping tile along half the south side of the building and a small section of the west side; the basement was waterproofed in another section at a cost of just under $10,000.00.
During Tibor Nezezon’ s presidency, along with his executives, an upgrade was completed to the entire main floor. Thanks to the many volunteers, the cost of this project was greatly reduced. The final cost was approximately $14,000.00 and this was paid for by the Hungarian hall, member donations and Hunor Dance Group. The renovations included new curtains; re-plaster walls; strip hardwood floors and refinish them; install new lower floor cabinets and counter top in the small hall; remove the old carpet wainscoting in the entire upper floor and add new wood wainscoting everywhere; complete maintenance on the lighting system.
There was an upgrade to the Men’s washroom completed by President Tibor Nezezon and his executive. This upgrade was paid for by a donation from the Hunor dance group.
The base of the flagpole was repainted and the flagpole itself was sanded and repainted under president Frank Gyurkovics and his executives.