James R. Leonard Center
There is a rich history at the James R. Leonard Center. It was built in 1982 and was utilized as a community center. It was named after Mr. James R. Leonard, who was an educator and was very well known for always doing things to help the community. Mr. James R. Leonard and his wife, Mrs. Hazel Leonard (also an educator) had a huge heart for the community, which is why the center was named after him. This was a safe haven for a lot of kids in the community. Mr. Jim Jones was the program director back then, and he is the reason why all the kids in the community had a safe place to go everyday. Mr. Jones poured his heart and soul into the youth. “The Center” is where everyone went in our community to play sports, summer school, tutoring, home economics (learning to cook, balance a checkbook, etc.), boxing training, summer jobs, and just a safe place to hang out. In the early 1990’s the James R. Leonard Center became part of the school district, and since that time, our community has not had a community center for our youth. In many neighborhoods, places that serve the community don’t exist anymore. A quality recreation center is a valuable asset.
The Athletic Factory will be utilizing the James R. Leonard Center (Cleveland Elementary School Gym) 2801 Vanness St. in Port Huron, to provide a recreational safe haven for the youth in our community, provide free SAT/ACT prep, and offer an area where gaming (XBox one, PS4) will be available for our youth, in the summer of 2020.
The summer program will provide open gym time for middle school and high school kids. This will be offered from June 22, 2020 to August 21, 2020, Monday through Friday 1pm to 6pm, and Saturday from 12pm to 4pm. Basketball helps our youth stay active while learning about hard work, sportsmanship, dedication, and respect for themselves and others. They also have the opportunity to interact with positive mentors and have lots of fun.
We also want to encourage our youth to achieve academic success. Inspiring a desire to succeed in academics will help better prepare students for college. Through our partnership with Teachers Pet Tutoring, we will be providing a 7 week SAT/ACT prep course free, for the first 30 kids that register. Students have very hectic schedules and the transition to college can be a rocky ride. With the right preparation, the road from high school to college can be a smooth ride. Providing SAT/ACT prep in the summer will allow students more time to focus.
It’s important for our youth in the community to have an outlet as well. We will offer an area where gaming (Xbox One, PS4, etc.) will be available. Good quality video games can offer lots of benefits to our youth. They can provide a fun and social form of entertainment, encourage teamwork and cooperation when played with others, make kids feel comfortable with technology, increase self-confidence and self-esteem as they master games, provide points of common interest and opportunities for socialization, and improve hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. The gaming will be available for a nominal cost of $5 per week, per kid. PLEASE FILL OUT THE BELOW SHOWN REGISTRATION FORM(S)!! One registration form is for “SAT/ACT PREP”, and the other registration form is for “SUMMER YOUTH RECREATIONAL PROGRAM”.