By Shaun Ryan
The link was hopping Wednesday, June 14, as families gathered to celebrate the facility’s second annual Membership Appreciation Night.
There were bounce houses for the little ones, tasty cuisine from the Fusion Food Truck, pizza for the kids and ice cream for all. After a brief presentation by link co-founder Raghu Misra relating the origins of the venue, as well as some of its newer programs, attendees participated in a digital poll, their responses instantly appearing on the large screen in the main lobby.
A membership award was presented to Todd Rovinelli and Erika Reinikainen-Rovinelli, who have been active at the link since April 2021. When asked what word he entered in the digital poll to describe the facility, Todd Rovinelli said, “Home.”
“Because when we’re not home, we’re always at the link,” he explained.
The couple and their son attend all the events at the facility, located at 425 Town Plaza Ave., Ponte Vedra, with their son participating in jiu jitsu, kids’ yoga, robotics, cooking, summer camp and more.
The family recently opened their CKO Kickboxing Ponte Vedra franchise in the plaza behind Nease High School.
Also on hand was Nitin Amin, sales and leasing consultant with Mercedes-Benz of Orange Park, who parked four EVs outside the building for attendees to examine.
“We’re ready to answer as many questions as we can to get you excited,” he said.
Misra was pleased with the turnout.
“It’s very, very humbling to see there are so many people in the community who actually embrace the vision of the link,” he said.
He expressed a desire to attract more multiple generations of local families. Currently, the youngest member is 4, the oldest 91.
The link is a smart building at the forefront of embracing technology for smart workspaces, event spaces and experiences. One of its many missions is to serve as a business incubator. Recently, Danny Yakel launched PROTACTX Brazilian Jiu Jitsu after first teaching classes at the link.
“He is a classic example of why the link got built,” said Misra. “We want to help an entrepreneur like Danny and others.”