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SimplyBank, Rhea County Community Center celebrate completion of HVAC installation at RC3 gym

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May 23, 2023

SimplyBank, Rhea County Community Center celebrate completion of HVAC installation at RC3 gym

Project completed six months after matching donation announced by SimplyBank

DAYTON, Tenn. -- Long-awaited HVAC upgrades are now complete at Rhea County Community Center (RC3), leaders at the certified 501(c)(3) non-profit announced this week.

And with the upgrade, RC3’s full-size gym in downtown Dayton is now centrally cooled for the first time. During installation of the HVAC system, central heating was also added for the gym -- replacing existing ceiling-mounted heat sources -- and full HVAC was also added to adjacent restrooms.

The result is a dream come true for leaders at RC3 who for years have targeted gymnasium HVAC as a strategic capital improvement. Operating on self-generated income and relying on annual corporate and private donors, however, the $70,000 price tag has long remained out of reach.

Then in stepped SimplyBank last fall.

After engaging RC3 with a desire to help support the center’s operations, SimplyBank was presented the need for HVAC in the downtown Dayton community center gym which hosts youth and adult sports like basketball and volleyball, as well as Silver Sneakers and after-school programming, and summer youth camps.

In response, SimplyBank announced in Oct. 2022 a $35,000 matching donation earmarked to help fund the HVAC project. Within six months, the donation was matched by grassroots private donors, Dayton Utility grants and a $50,000 allocation for Rhea County Community Center upgrades in Gov. Bill Lee’s 2023 budget.

Cindy Horton, executive director at RC3, credits SimplyBank’s tentpole investment in RC3 with not only providing needed funding, but also generating wider excitement to see the HVAC project happen.

“A lot of people said this project would never get off the ground, and that we were dreaming too big.” Horton said. “But our volunteer board, along with so many faithful supporters over the years, always believed in this vision. When our cost was essentially cut in half last fall thanks to SimplyBank’s matching donation, excitement spread and our donors were energized to get this project across the finish line.”

Horton also said the investment’s scope will extend far beyond simple heating and cooling.

“Our gym is an amazing asset which has arguably never seen its full potential realized,” she said. “It’s home base for so many of our programs and is where most of our visiting guests and tournaments spend their time. It’s the front door to our community to our visitors, and this upgrade reflects well not only on RC3, but on Rhea County as a whole. Seeing this happen is a testament to Rhea County’s generosity, and we’re grateful to SimplyBank for their investment in this community’s long-term health and future.”

The opportunity to make a significant, lasting impact on the bank’s hometown captured SimplyBank leaders’ interest and imagination during talks with RC3 leadership about the community center’s needs late last summer.

Cara Roberson, president at SimplyBank, said bank leaders originally engaged RC3 simply to explore ways to get more involved and to help fund important programs. But in those talks, the need for gym HVAC continually emerged and it became clear that central heating and cooling was RC3’s greatest need -- and where SimplyBank could make the greatest impact.

“The defining characteristics of good community banks are community involvement and investment,” Roberson said. “We approached RC3 wanting to know how SimplyBank could support the great work they are doing. After all of our discussions, it was clear: HVAC at RC3 needed to happen, and we needed to do something about it.”

For Roberson, the investment reflects the values SimplyBank holds dear and represents the bank’s long-term commitment to serving its 130-year home.

“Supporting a stronger, healthier Rhea County is a net win for all of us who call this community home,” Roberson said. “SimplyBank is grateful for, and proud to support, community leaders like RC3 who are willing to dream big and invest time and money in the pursuit of a better future. We are proud to announce with our friends at RC3 that this project is now officially complete and are grateful for the opportunity to play a part in simply making lives better for our hometown.”

Additional community support for the project was provided by Graysville, Tenn.-based Goins Heating and Air via in-kind equipment and installation donations.

RC3 board members Dennis Van Meter and Alex Green, Van Meter Properties and SimplyBank, respectively, also provided critical support for the project.

RC3 also sends a special thanks to Electrotech, the City of Dayton and State Sen. Adam Lowe for their aid in completing the project.

Find out more about SimplyBank online at

Find out more about Rhea County Community Center, and how to support RC3’s ongoing Strong Kids and Families campaign, online at




About SimplyBank.

SimplyBank is a premier provider of community banking and financial services headquartered in Southeast Tennessee. Deeply-rooted with more than 130 years of community banking experience, SimplyBank operates across eight East Tennessee and North Georgia counties, offering retail, consumer and business banking solutions at 14 offices, including full-service branch locations in: Benton, Tenn.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Cleveland, Tenn.; Dayton, Tenn.; Decatur, Tenn.; Flintstone, Ga.; Harriman, Tenn.; Ringgold, Ga.; Rockwood, Tenn.; Rossville, Ga.; Soddy-Daisy, Tenn.; Spring City, Tenn.; and south Dayton, Tenn. SimplyBank offers customers around-the-clock options at its convenient ATM locations and via the SimplyBank mobile banking application and online banking. Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender. For more information, visit


About Rhea County Community Center

Rhea County Community Center (Rc3) provides wellness, sports and healthy programs for Rhea County, helping people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds. Rc3 is a Certified 501(c)(3) non-profit founded in 2016 which offers financial assistance to allow access to programming regardless of income. Rc3’s mission is to BUILD A HEALTHY COMMUNITY WITH CHRIST AS OUR CORNERSTONE through fitness, youth programs, sports, youth and family development, community health initiatives and partnerships. Rc3 offers many services, including: a wellness center; group exercise classes; after-school programs; Silver Sneakers; senior fitness classes; and youth sports, including soccer, tumbling, volleyball, flag football and aquatics in a warm, faith-, family-, and fitness-friendly atmosphere. Rc3 helps people of all ages, abilities, and incomes reach their full potential offering everything you'd expect and more, including scholarships. Give online at