Boys’ Club to operate athletic facilities at new community center within Armory site

May 20, 2021 Editorial Staff
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Boys’ Club of New York has been selected as the recreational operator of the recently renamed Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center, formerly known as the Bedford Union Armory, in Crown Heights.

BCNY will be responsible for managing day-to-day operations for the facility and will focus its resources on youth development and community building, according to the New York Economic Development Corp.

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Additionally, BCNY will partner with several not-for-profit tenants that will soon occupy space in the facility and will connect with local community groups to ensure maximum use of the athletic areas in the Major Owens Center. It will also promote the use of the Betty Carter Auditorium for the Arts, along with other non-profits and community partners.

The Major R. Owens Center is nearing completion and will soon house a 60,000 square-foot world-class recreation center with an indoor swimming pool, three hardwood basketball courts, an indoor soccer field, dance and performance studios, a fitness center and areas designated for boxing and archery.

The facility will also house space for local community-based nonprofits. These are slated to offer enrichment and educational programming such as coding, after-school support, athletic clinics and camps. The center will provide year-round space for entertainment and arts events and access for local artists to teach theater, film and music.

“The Boys’ Club of NY brings a wealth of expertise in empowering youth throughout New York City and is a perfect complement to the other nonprofits that will take space at the Major Owens Center,” said NYCEDC President and CEO Rachel Loeb.

“The Boys’ Club of New York was honored to be chosen to join our community partners at the Major Owens Center in this important venture,” said BCNY Executive Director Stephen Tosh. “We look forward to bringing our management expertise and commitment to inclusion and equity to the rich, vibrant and diverse neighborhood of Crown Heights.”

“As the opening for the Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center is underway, I am rather pleased to hear that Boys’ Club of New York (BCNY) has been selected to serve as the recreational operator,” said NYC Council Majority Leader Laurie A. Cumbo, who represents the area. “BCNY brings with them years of experience, a wealth of knowledge, and a track record in effective programming, which will undoubtedly benefit the Center’s nonprofit tenants and community partners.”–>

“We are working hard to ensure the tomorrows that will be made here are secure,” said Beverly Newsome, president of Ebbets Field Tenants Association and Chair of Outreach for the Major R. Owens Community Advisory Committee. “We anticipate Boys Club of New York being excellent custodians of them as well.”

The Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center is expected to open by the end of 2021 with the residential components of the Armory project to open in 2022 and 2023, according to EDC.

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