Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

PAL Plans Center for Families at Park

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

PAL Plans Center for Families at Park

Article excerpt

Armed with architect plans and big dreams, the Jacksonville

Police Athletic League has launched tentative efforts to raise

$3.6 million for a recreation center at District 2 Regional Park

in Arlington.

PAL officials have put their cause before Duval County

legislators. The next stop is expected to be a visit to city

government and, eventually, a countywide campaign for private


"We have a lot of work to do, and we're devoting a lot of our

time to this building project," said L.B. Scott, PAL's executive

director, who wants construction to begin this summer.

Earlier this month, PAL officials tried to convince legislators

the project deserves $1 million in state funding.

PAL president Bob Barnes told the Duval Legislative Delegation

at a meeting Nov. 15 the family-oriented recreation facility is

something "Jacksonville desperately needs."

PAL hopes to get $1 million from the state and $1 million from

the city, and plans to raise about $1.6 million on its own.

PAL officials say they would raise the money through

fundraising events and activities, business partnerships and

private donations.

Plans for the family center include a cafeteria, an arts and

crafts room, a woodshop, several classrooms and training rooms,

a medical clinic, a game room, storage space, restrooms,

gymnasium, basketball courts and a laundry room.

Here's a look at the vision for the recreation center:

It's where a single mother can put her young child in day care,

then go into a canning kitchen to can vegetables.

Or, if she prefers, attend an art class where she will sculpt

vases or draw.

At the same time, her preteen can play on one of 12 soccer

fields with other youths about the same age. Or, a teenager can

go to a small library to read and study. …

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