Hospital Operations Director Beth Edwards said the event “at its core” celebrates the community’s collaboration with WellStar to build the eight-floor structure, which will replace the company’s existing hospital in Dallas.
“It’s a celebration for all of us to come together to see the building as it stands, and have a little fun as well,” she said.
However, company spokeswoman Sharon Woods said WellStar wanted to emphasize the new hospital building would not be seeing patients until April 1. The existing hospital at 600 W. Memorial Drive in Dallas will operate until April 1.
Officials selected the event’s date because construction and employee training were “basically complete” and WellStar could give the public “unrestricted access to a degree” before it begins operations, Edwards said.
“This provides us the perfect opportunity between construction actually being done and actual patient care beginning, to invite our community partners and members in to explore the building, to see it before they become patients’ visitors and we’re in the day-to-day of our care process,” Edwards said.
The daylong event will begin with a 5K run and walk on the Silver Comet Trail at 8 a.m. and end with a concert and fireworks show.
An 11:30 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled, and WellStar invited Gov. Nathan Deal and District 14 U.S. Rep. Tom Graves, R-Calhoun, to assist, Woods said. At noon, the family fun day and employee-guided tours of the 295,000-square-foot facility will begin, Edwards said.
“Not only are you getting a sneak peek, but you’re getting information from the actual staff of this facility,” she said.
The company’s local and system-wide leaders, marketing team and local governmental officials worked in monthly meetings for two years to help organize the Saturday event, Edwards said.
The Hiram Police Department and Paulding County Sheriff’s Office will provide security and help coordinate traffic flow for the expected large crowd, Woods said.
No parking will be allowed on the hospital site except for handicapped parking. Parking will be available on Bill Carruth Parkway directly across the street from the new hospital.
“This is a celebration for our community, so we’re prepared for a robust crowd,” Edwards said.
If you go:
What: Pre-Grand Opening Event.
Where: WellStar Paulding Hospital, 146 Bill Carruth Parkway, Hiram.
Lineup of activities:
- 5K run/walk, 8 a.m., from Silver Comet Trail to new hospital.
- Ribbon-cutting ceremony, 11:30 a.m.
- Family fun day with games, food and prizes, noon to 6 p.m.
- Free concert featuring country artists Jon Pardi and Paris Luna & Co., 6:45 p.m.
- Fireworks following the concert.
Information, race registration: visit www.wellstar.org/thinkpaulding