:: Hindu Temple History and Accomplishments
During the 1970, major metropolitan cities in USA started building Hindu Temples. The population of Hindu community was growing in Colorado also and the community started discussions of a Hindu Temple in Denver also. Finally in 1984, they incorporated Hindu Society of Colorado. Interested community members used to meet at different member’s residences for spiritual discussions. For a brief period, a rented house in Aurora was used as a temple – several deities were installed and worshipped by the community members.
Even as the community grew both in number and wealth, not much progress could be made in terms of building a temple. Frustrated with this, another group incorporated Hindu Temple and Cultural Center of the Rockies (HTCC). The two organizations merged in 1995 with HTCC as the surviving organization. Several members of that management team are still part of the current HTCC Board. They successfully raised over $100,000 to purchase an old church building in 1996, and to remodel it into a temple (our current facilities). The publication of Mandir Vani, as a news letter, was also started.
The search for a full time priest began in 1997 and finally in 1998, Acharya Kailash Upadhyay Ji, who had been with two temples in Canada, agreed to come as Chief Priest of the Denver temple. The deities were then installed and the temple started its operation on a regular basis. The temple used to open every evening and on 5 days. As now, Sunday was the day for larger gathering, and tradition of serving Prasad lunch (mostly cooked by the sponsoring family) was started. HTCC was on solid financial footing and purchased the neighboring lot.
In 1999, the first web site was established; and HTCC started using emails, in addition to Mandir Vani, to keep the community communication informed about celebrations. The mailing list grew to 1800 in 2000 with huge influx of computer professionals from India. In 2001, activities were expanded to start Bal Mandir and Yoga classes.
The third lot was bought in 2002 and the Board considered the idea of constructing a new building. However the idea was rejected due to small size of the available land, less than an acre. Instead, the building was remodeled to open areas on both floors in 2003 and the second lot was paved for parking in 2004.
While plans for a New Temple had been under discussion all the time, a New Temple Committee was formed in 2005. After evaluating several potential sites, a decision was made to purchase the site in Centennial, in 2006. Same year, Pundit Raghavendra Iyyer Ji joined as Assistant Priest.
The land in Centennial was purchased and Bhoomi Poojaa Samaroha was celebrated in 2007. The design of the New Temple was completed in 2008. In 2009, the City of Centennial approved the site plan for construction of Hindu Temple and Cultural Center.
|1984||- Hindu Society of Colorado is incorporated. Community members meet for religious discourses at their residences on sporadic basis. For a brief period, a house in Aurora is rented where several deities are installed and worshipped by community members.|
|1995||- Hindu Temple and Cultural Center of the Rockies (HTCC) is incorporated and Hindu Society is merged into HTCC.|
|1996||- HTCC buys a small old church building on South Wadsworth Blvd in Littleton an remodels it to house the Temple. Community members raise funds to pay in cash. Publication of Mandir Vani, news letter, begins.|
|1998||– HTCC recruits a full-time highly qualified and experienced Chief Priest (Acharya Kailash C. Upadhyay ) from Canada and installs all major deities. Temple is opened every evening and 5 mornings each week, with sponsored poojas and Prasad lunch on Sundays. HTCC buys the adjacent vacant lot.|
|1999||- A web site (www.hindutempleofcolorado.org) is established and e-mail broadcasts are used in addition to Mandir Vani, to keep the community informed of activities at the Temple.|
|2000||– The mailing list exceeds 1800 with a huge influx of computer professionals from India.|
|2001||– HTCC starts Bal Manidr program for children and Yoga classes for adults.|
|2002||– HTCC buys the third adjacent vacant lot and considers building a new Temple at the site but decides against it due to small total land size (less than 1 acre).|
|2003||– After obtaining Special Use Zoning Permit from Jefferson County, a major inside remodeling is undertaken to increase the seating capacity upstairs, and improve food preparation and distribution downstairs.|
|2004||- Outside improvements (parking lot, sidewalk, landscaping, and fences ) re completed.|
|2005||– New Temple Committee (comprising of Several Trustees and Community Members) is formed to expedite the purchase of land and construction of s new, larger and better Temple.|
|2006||– HTCC celebrates 10 years of continuous operation of the current temple. A highly-qualified South Indian Assistant Priest (N. D. Raghavendra) is recruited from India to expand the temple operation hours and service to the community. HTCC sells the third lot and signs a contract for purchase of 4.25 acres of land for a new Temple.|
|2007||– HTCC purchased the new land at 7200 South Potomac Street, Centennial, Colorado on January 30, 2007 at a price of $500,000, which was raised with the community support. The Bhoomi Puja, veneration and sanctification of the land (Earth/Bhoomi) was performed in a grand scale on June 23, 2007.|