A local business is looking for new ways to bring fun for families to the forefront.


While Gatherings is known as a venue that often hosts family celebrations, like weddings and anniversary parties, along with many other events, owner Evie Peterson is looking to stretch the businesses’ boundaries to offer family fun on nights when her facility isn’t being rented for something else.


This month, on Saturday, May 20, Gatherings, which is located in the downtown area, will be the site of a Family Night.


According to Angela Hall, marketing coordinator for Gatherings, this is Peterson’s brain child and will feature all kinds of board games and other games played on a table, like cards.


Whatever people define as their “family,” whether that’s members of the clan you are related to, or friends you hang out with regularly, everyone is invited to come to Gatherings between 5 and 9 p.m. and play games.


Hall emphasizes that this is not a “money maker” for the business, but they will be taking orders from people for freshly made pizzas and/or nachos (with a family platter size option), and they will open their bar for beverage purchases.


“One of Evie’s personal missions is to reclaim the meaning behind family,” said Hall. “She’s fully aware that as a mom in Nevada, there aren’t a lot of things to do and you have to create your own fun sometimes.” Hall said Peterson wants families to make memories without having to drive to Des Moines or Ames. “We’re going to have stacks of board games,” Hall said, but for people who aren’t game players, “they are welcome to come sit and watch too.”


There is no cost to come into Gatherings during Family Night. The only cost will be if you want refreshments.


Hall said they see events like this happening here and there throughout the year. They’ve also talked about the idea of having a women’s night this fall and teen nights with a band coming in or something. “We are open to ideas, like father-daughter dances, and such … We want to know, ‘What do people do for fun?’ and how can we get people out of the comfort zone of their homes, so we can bring people together?”


The fact that Peterson has taken over a very historic building, at the heart of the community, really matches what Hall describes as Peterson’s “heart for Nevada and for its families. She doesn’t want some of that history to go away. Nevada has a lot to offer …, because of the people. It just takes getting people together.”