New recreation center gets a sign of the times


Something new has been added at the Johnston Indoor Recreation Center.

It’s a colorful and classy sign that even offers a “welcome” to visitors who recently have come from all over New England and New York to rent the 26,000 square foot state of the art facility for a variety of sports tournaments.

Friday, three workers from Baris Sign Company erected the two-sided electronic sign, which is similar to the one sign the Pawtucket-based company installed outside the Johnston Town Hall back in 2015.

There’s a decided difference, though, in the Recreation Center sign, which Mayor Joseph Polisena proudly noted, “is done in our town colors of Columbia blue and white.”

“This (recreation center) sign is much, much taller than the one at Town Hall,” the mayor noted. “I wanted something that would catch people’s eyes the moment they drove up or down Atwood Avenue.”

Polisena also pointed out that the new sign also features a digital message board that will greet all teams and organizations that rent the Indoor Recreation Center as well as list the day’s schedule of events.

The digital message board measures 18 inches high and 72 inches wide and sparkling new sign was purchased from Baris Sign Company which is the exclusive Rhode Island dealer for Daktronics, the country’s leader when it comes to scoreboards, signs etc. for a different sign sports facilities like stadiums and indoor arenas.

There are several other interesting factors about the new sign and digital message center, which Johnston received from what Polisena called “a very, very generous donation.”

When the “Johnston jewel” was being erected, Polisena received what he called “extraordinary help from a lot of generous people and companies who all had a hand in building this state of the art facility.”

One in particular was Alfred Carpianato, a noted Rhode Island business owner who Polisena called “a great corporate citizen in Johnston” who after meeting with the Mayor about items the Recreation Center needed, agreed to donate the new sign and digital message center.

Although there’s no exact listing about Carpianato’s extraordinary gift, Polisena had a special gold sign with black lettering affixed to the wall inside the Center’s main lobby. It simply reads: “Special Thanks to Alfred Carpianato for his generous donation to The Johnston Indoor Recreation Center.”

Even Friday when they were installing the new sign and digital message board, the three Baris Sign Company workers displayed a certain amount of enthusiasm for the project.

That’s probably because Alex Antoninick is, he proudly told Polisena, “a Johnston resident” who helped install the same sort of sign at Johnston Town Hall.


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