Theta Chi Groundbreaking

Several members who were key to the construction and planning of the new Theta Chi Fraternity House take part in a formal groundbreaking ceremony Saturday on Fraternity Row.

A crowd including fraternity brothers and alumni gathered Saturday at 10 Fraternity Row to celebrate the groundbreaking ceremony of the new Theta Chi house.

“I’ve never seen an empty lot look better than this,” Vice President for Student Affairs Dave Kratzer said when he addressed about 50 people dressed in orange and blue at the ceremony.

The groundbreaking event was a historic moment and day for UF and the fraternity brothers, he said.

After attendees posed for photos at the construction site, guests moved to Corry Village for a reception.

Gator alumna Kim Wheeler attended the ceremony with her two sons, who are Theta Chi brothers.

She said Greek life allows them to make lifelong friends and learn about UF’s history.

“The brotherhood takes the big campus and makes it more concentrated,” Wheeler said.

Dressed in a blue jacket and a polka-dot bow tie, 19-year-old Theta Chi brother Erich Krzyzak said the groundbreaking is an enormous deal.

“Everybody is excited,” he said. “These are the first stages of a huge product.”

The accounting sophomore said the fraternity’s former house was built in 1916. The new house should be built by July 15.

“The other house was showing its age,” Krzyzak said. “It was definitely more than time for a face-lift.”