PAWTUCKET — Befitting its longstanding social tradition, there were smiles all around at Tuesday night's debut of the newly refurbished To Kalon Club.
Officials and employees of the Public Archaeology Laboratory, Inc., the non-profit company which owns the landmark building, mingled and chatted over hors d'oeuvres and cocktails with former members and past presidents of the legendary “TK Club,” as it is commonly known. The consensus on the completed $2 million project? Beautiful!
The 13,199-square foot building at 26 Main St. will serve as the new home of PAL, a cultural resource management consulting firm. PAL Executive Director Stephen Olausen said that since the non-profit company specializes in architectural history and preservation, the circa 1911 Classical Revival-style structure was considered to be a good fit for the company's headquarters.
Olausen said PAL had outgrown its location at 210 Lonsdale Avenue and the management team had been looking for a suitable building with more space for about five years. He credited Herb Weiss, Pawtucket's Economic and Cultural Affairs Officer, for putting them in touch with the board of directors for the To Kalon Club.
Formed in 1867, the To Kalon Club was originally an exclusive men's social club whose members included many of the city's most prominent businessmen and industrialists. The sprawling, three-story brick building featured two dining rooms, a lounge, billiards and card-playing rooms, meeting rooms, guest quarters and a bowling alley. Decades later, the club allowed women to join and also tried promoting itself as a venue for banquets and private functions.
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