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Letter: Yes We Can

We’ve thought about it. We’ve talked about it. We’ve prayed about it. And, now our dream of having a community center has been realized.

This Saturday, Sept. 8, the Town of North Hempstead will open the long-awaited “Yes We Can” Community Center at 141 Garden Street. The center, which has earned LEED Platinum status because of its environmentally friendly design, features a multipurpose gym, fitness center, dance studio, television/recording studio, reading room, Internet café, game room, meeting rooms and other amenities. Upon its opening, it will become a recreational, cultural and educational hub that will serve our community for generations to come.

The opening of the center marks the fulfillment of a dream shared by many in our community over several generations. I remember, as a young child, the calls of community leaders for a facility filled with activities that would engage both children and adults.

While others may have lost heart, these leaders and our community never lost hope. Their dream was handed down to their children and to their children’s children. It is fitting that April Brown, the daughter of two of these visionary leaders, has been appointed to serve as the center’s first director. April, like her parents before her, has worked tirelessly toward the day when the center would be completed. That day has come.

The center’s name, “Yes We Can,” pays tribute to President Obama, who provided a portion of the funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. But, even more so, it pays tribute to our community’s strong will, perseverance, determination and commitment to keeping the dream alive. I hope this recognition of our history and our character will also motivate and evoke a spirit of optimism in generations to follow.

I am proud to have partnered with Supervisor Jon Kaiman and Councilwoman Viviana Russell, who never took their eyes off the prize, in helping to bring this project to fruition. Please join us for the Grand Opening on Sept. 8 for what promises to be a wonderful and joyous celebration.  The community center is located at 141 Garden Street (at the intersection of Broadway and Garden Street). A full slate of recreational and cultural activities, starting with a ribbon-cutting at 12:30 p.m. and ending with a musical jubilee at 7 p.m. You can call my office at 571-6202 for more information.

Legislator Robert Troiano