Team with NAACP Youth Council to Refurbish Kennedy Park and Riverton Centers

PORTLAND, ME (March 13, 2010)- The Maine Red Claws, presented by Quirk Chevrolet, today announced the launch of a joint community program with the NAACP Youth Council to renovate the study centers at the Portland Housing Authority properties located in the Riverton and Kennedy Park Neighborhoods. The announcement was made in a press conference held today at the Riverton Study Center.

Present at the press conference were Red Claws President and General Manager Jon Jennings, President of the Portland Chapter of the NAACP Rachel Talbot-Ross, Portland Police Chief James Craig, Portland Housing Authority Executive Director Mark Adelson, members of the NAACP Youth Council, the Red Claws players and children from the Riverton neighborhood. Designs for the renovated study centers, designed by Portland architectural firm Archetype, were unveiled during the press event.

“After we saw the number of kids who use the two study centers, we felt that they deserved a clean, safe and modern place to further their educations,” Jennings said. “We know that the kids are very excited for this project to begin. The items they have requested, from computers to books and paper, are things that every child should have readily available. We look forward to seeing their reactions when the study centers are completed.”

Construction on the two study centers is expected to begin as early as the March 20 and will be directed by Keeley Construction of Portland. At Kennedy Park, the renovations will include filling in an old staircase to give more square footage to the main area, additional storage, painting and new furnishings. At Riverton, the renovations include knocking down one wall on the first floor and two on the second, the removal of old kitchen cabinets and a sink, additional storage and new furnishings. Both locations will all receive school supplies. Funding to begin the project was provided by Quirk Chevrolet, with additional funds to be raised for the project through financial and in-kind donations from area businesses and individuals. The project is expected to cost approximately $15,000, with a second proposed phase to update air exchange and remove portions of an old bathroom, to cost and additional $10,000.

Area business and individuals are encouraged to support the project. In-kind donation of building supplies, school supplies, new or gently used school furniture, or books may be made by calling 207-210-6655. Financial donations may be mailed to PO Box 15180, Portland, ME 04101; Please make checks payable to “Maine Red Claws Foundation” and indicate on the memo line that the donation is for the study center project. For further information, please call 207-210-6655.