By SCOTT WEISSER
THE GOSHEN NEWS
Norma Monik is a fitness-nutrition coordinator. She’s also skilled with a hula hoop.
Early on a sunny afternoon Saturday, Monik could be found on the west lawn of Goshen Middle School, swiveling and keeping the hoop rotating. Monik is one of those people who can hula hoop at neck and shoulder level — no mean feat.
Monik was part of a public celebration Saturday. Attendees were marking the 100-year anniversary of Goshen hospital, known circa 2013 as IU Health Goshen Hospital.
“We are really having everyone come out and just enjoying themselves, having a lot of fitness activities as well as just plain fun activities,” said Monik, an IU Health staffer. “...We are in appreciation to our community.”
In addition to a hula hoop area, Saturday’s event also included soccer ball kicks, a climbing wall, basketball, bean bag and football tossing, and a percussion/fitness exercise. On-site health screenings were also available.
The anniversary marks a century of Goshen’s hospital. Planning for the facility dates back further.
“By 1900, Goshen residents began to feel the need for a real public hospital and groups began to talk about the prospect and fundraising began,” reads a passage in “Goshen: The First 150 Years,” which Goshen News staffers helped compile. “...In the spring of 1909, committees of the Civic Club and Commercial Exchange, two local groups, had been formed to draw up hospital plans.”
On April 3, 1912, the home of Rebecca Smith in the 100 block of North Fifth Street was purchased for $6,000, and plans got underway to convert the residence into a hospital. On Nov. 29, 1913, the 27-bed hospital officially opened.
Goshen grew in the coming years, and the need arose for a bigger hospital.
“Fundraising efforts began in the 1940s for construction of a new hospital, and in the fall of 1946, ground was purchased south of High Park Avenue on Goshen’s south side for the new building,” according to the “Goshen” history book. That’s the site the facility sits on today. The new hospital opened to the public May 14, 1955.
Monik has been with the hospital since 2001, 12 years of the facility’s century-long lifespan.
“It’s a wonderful place to work,” she said of IU Health. “It’s probably the best place I ever worked at, and I’ve been working for more than 45 years in the health system.”
Count Michelle Wilson as an IU Health fan, too. The hospital staffer was watching her daughter, Remya Johnson of Goshen, hula hoop on the lawn during the celebration.
“I’ve been there (IU Health) eight years,” she said. “I started in CCB — which is labor and delivery — and now I work in surgery and I love it.”
By this time, Remya had two hula hoops going at once.
“Versatile,” her mom said with a laugh.