September 18, 2000, was a monumental day in the AJGA's history.
That was the day the Association took up official residence at Chateau Elan Resort. The day was the final link in a chain of events that began many years before.
At some point in the mid-90s, although its hard to say exactly when, the AJGA outgrew its headquarters at Horseshoe Bend in Roswell, Ga.
When that 4,000 square-foot brick colonial was built in 1983, it had the space to comfortably accommodate about 15 people, three times the number of AJGA staff at the time.
QUICK FACT: The AJGA's new $2.4 millon headquarters is being completely funded by private donations through the $3.2 million AJGA Capital Campaign.
But after 10 years in the building, the number of AJGA tournaments had skyrocketed and, consequently, so had the number of staff. The building's capacity had been reached.
So, in 1994, as the building was starting to burst at the seams, the AJGA began making plans to relocate to a larger headquarters. But in the meantime, six members of the Tournament Operations Department moved into a rented office building a few blocks away to alleviate the overcrowding.
For a time, everyone could breathe a little easier. But not for long. As plans for the new building were researched, the AJGA continued to grow.
"The growth of the AJGA had exceeded all expectations," said AJGA Executive Director Stephen Hamblin. "Our old building was largely responsible for the family atmosphere created within the AJGA. This atmosphere played a large role in our early success. But the need for additional space was vital to our ability to continue servicing our membership."
In 1998, an agreement was struck with Chateau Elan Resort, about 40 miles northeast of Atlanta. At last, the AJGA had a place to construct its new headquarters.
As the building took shape, the AJGA's growth did not stop.
In the summer of 2000, the AJGA squeezed 24 people into the same building that was built for 15.
Indeed, the old brick colonial headquarters seemed to grow smaller and smaller as the staff got larger and larger. Even the Tournament Operations staff's rented office space became overcrowded during the waning months.
Fortunately, the new AJGA National Headquarters at Chateau Elan was completed on schedule in August of 2000. When the summer's final event was completed on Labor Day, the long-awaited time had finally arrived.
Without a moment's rest, the AJGA packed up 23 years of history and moved into the future.
Our hope is that the future is as good as the past.