New Boys and Girls Club Needed

Sixty percent of Taylor County youth live in single parent homes. That's why officials say kids need a better, safer place to go after school.

Seventeen-year-old Kendale Brown has been coming the Taylor County Boys and Girls Club since he was 11.

Kendale says, "It kept me out of the street and violence. I kept coming because we participated in a lot of things; we go on trips. I experienced a lot. I've been to places I never thought I would go."

Because the organization has fulfilled the dreams of many youth like Kendale, the director says it's time for his dream to come true to provide an adequate building for the club.

Kevin Kidd, Executive Director, says, "This facility that we're in now was built in the 1950s; our other club was built in the 1920s."

Loughridge Park is where the Boys and Girls Club wants to build its new state-of-the-art facility. The 15,000 square foot building would be able to accommodate the 200 youth it serves every day.

Kevin adds, "That facility would include computer labs, a two-court gymnasium, game rooms, and a teen center."

The club has asked the Perry city council for $1.2 million.

Doug Everett of the Perry City Council, District 5, says, "There's no money budgeted in this current year's budget. Next year that will be addressed at our budget time. I can tell you in the past the Boys and Girls Club has been supported by the city council when money is available."

Another option is for the city to donate the land on Loughridge Park. There will be a public hearing on the matter on February 14.