Partnerships and collaborations are setting the foundation for continued Blugold excellence and regional quality of life. Working with community partners, UW-Eau Claire is involved in two major community projects, the Pablo Center at the Confluence and the Sonnentag Complex, as well as the new Flesch Family Welcome Center.
The Pablo Center at the Confluence
This unique public-private collaboration in support of the arts showcases the vibrant local arts scene, cultivates emerging creative talent and attracts national artists to Eau Claire. Pablo Center also offers more opportunities for the community to experience the extraordinary talents of UW-Eau Claire students and distinguished faculty — many of whom are world-class artists in their own right.
Thanks to UW-Claire alumni John and Carolyn Sonnentag’s generous gift, as well support from the student body and approval from the Board of Regents, the Sonnentag Complex project is now underway. The complex, which began construction in the spring of 2022 along the Chippewa River on Menomonie Street, will include:
- a 172,502 square foot major event facility with a total capacity of 5,000 (3,250 fixed seats, 1,320 floor seats, and limited standing room);
- two-story UW-Eau Claire wellness and recreation facilities;
- offices for Blugold Athletics;
- four sport courts suitable for basketball, volleyball, etc.;
- a Mayo Clinic Health System clinical location offering sports medicine, human performance enhancement, and imaging services;
- a 120-yard artificially-turfed fieldhouse;
- surface parking to serve the entire complex, including electric vehicle charging stations; and
- land suitable for complex expansion or development of private businesses that could complement and serve activities at the event and recreation complex.
In addition to the gift of land and initial funding from the Sonnentag family and WEDC and EPA grants, various other funding sources are being identified including a major philanthropic effort initially seeking funds locally, regionally and nationally.
Flesch Family Welcome Center
Prospective students, Blugold alumni and other visitors have a new entryway to campus with the university's "new front door" which opened in 2021. Through a generous lead gift, alumni couple and longtime supporters of their alma mater, Tom and Jeannie Flesch, secured naming rights to the Flesch Family Welcome Center. The center is built on university land along Roosevelt Avenue across from Schneider Hall (formerly the site of a visitor kiosk and three razed homes). The building is a state-of-the-art facility housing Admissions, Alumni Association and the Foundation. The center includes the latest technology, collaborative spaces for campus visits and alumni meetings, scenic views of the campus mall and a legacy wall recognizing the generosity of Blugold donors.
Additional opportunities for named areas of the building remain available. The UW-Eau Claire Foundation encourages those interested in transforming student recruitment and alumni engagement through the new Flesch Family Welcome Center to explore possibilities within the Foundation.