You don’t usually see hundreds of people excitedly rush to their dentist’s office.
But nearly 700 people visited the BGW Dental Group on Thursday evening for an open house celebration at the practice’s new facility in Gainesville.
The facility at 1215 Vine St. combines the practice’s two former locations into one complete with 16 patient rooms, four private consultation rooms, two surgical suites, two private recovery areas, two sterilization labs and more.
“We’ve got four doctors that work full-time,” said Dr. Cindy Fulenwider Greene, DMD, one of the practices’ doctors. “We have two fully equipped surgery suites that we do surgeries out of any day of the week, and we’re open Monday through Friday, 7:40 (a.m.) to 7 (p.m.)”
The practice also has a full kitchen downstairs with the doctors’ offices, spacious waiting areas with gas logs in real stone fireplaces and amenities including charging stations, free Wi-Fi and complimentary beverages.
Greene said the facility also has a state-of-the-art conference room, which they plan to use for continuing education and to connect with the rest of the dental community.
One of the most impressive features are the two sterilization labs, according to dental assistant Susan Hoffman, who’s worked in the position for 20 years.
“This is by far the best facility, and the easiest sterilization area I have ever worked in,” Hoffman said. “Everything has its place.”
The sterilization rooms are entirely hands-free, assistants can push a button with their foot to open storage units, ultrasonic utensil baths, utensil dryers and more.
The new facility opened to patients March 31 after nearly eight months of construction and years of planning.
“I purchased the property in 2007,” said Dr. Richard Bennett, DMD, another of the BGW dentists. “We planned to build a mixed-use facility, both medical and dental, but then the economy happened. So we held back on those plans and had tremendous growth during that period of time.”
Bennett said as the years passed and the practice grew, they ended up needing a larger facility than they originally planned.
“I joined Dr. Bennett over nine years ago and we started planning for a facility over nine years ago,” Greene said. “It’s been in the making ever since, and it’s just a wonderful opportunity to serve this community. It’s something I dreamed of.”
The event Thursday included tours, dinner and live music, and Bennett said he couldn’t believe the number of people who came out to mingle and show their support.
Greene said she felt “overwhelmed and blessed” by the community response.
“Growing up in this community, going to Gainesville High, participating in community activities and being a hometown girl who came back to practice, it feels amazing to be able to provide a facility like this,” Greene said.
Bennett said the practice simply “tries to take care of families in our community.”
All four doctors, including Bennett, Greene, Dr. Ryan Wood, DDS, and Dr. Matthew Vaughn, DDS, volunteer at Good News Clinics where Bennett is president of the board, and try to give back to the community they serve.
“We’re just trying to give them a smile so they can get on with their lives,” Bennett said. “We really feel like that’s a big part of our calling, to be a bigger part of the community, and we wanted to build a bigger facility to be more of an asset to this community.”