Fundraiser will benefit Bustleton Bengals

A gen­er­ous dona­tion: City Coun­cil­man Bri­an O’Neill and vo­lun­teers and ath­letes from the Bustleton Bengals ac­cept a $15,000 check from Wal­mart to­ward con­struc­tion of a gym. MARIA POUCH­NIKOVA / TIMES PHOTO

The Bustleton Bengals youth sports or­gan­iz­a­tion will hold a beef-and-beer fun­draiser on Fri­day, March 7, from 8 p.m. to mid­night at Fraternal Or­der of Po­lice Lodge 5 Her­oes Ball­room, at 11630 Car­oline Road.

Tick­ets cost $30 and in­clude food, draft beer, wine, soda, mu­sic and raffles. For tick­ets, call the FOP at 215-629-3600, Kev­in Hughes at 215-301-0863 or Chris Mc­Nich­olas at 215-260-7699.

Pro­ceeds will go to­ward con­struc­tion of a gym­nas­i­um at Robert Hayes Play­ground, at Roosevelt Boulevard and Con­well Av­en­ue, where the group’s club­house is loc­ated.

City Coun­cil­man Bri­an O’Neill has com­mit­ted to fund­ing 90 per­cent of the pro­ject, and the Bengals are work­ing hard to try to raise the rest. The es­tim­ated over­all cost is $1 mil­lion to $1.2 mil­lion. The city will also pay for the util­it­ies and any ma­jor re­pairs. The city avi­ation de­part­ment — which owns the ground — gave its OK to build there. Wal­mart re­cently donated $15,000.

The former Bustleton Boys Club has served neigh­bor­hood youths since 1956. More than 1,000 fam­il­ies are part of the club, which of­fers bas­ket­ball, base­ball, soft­ball, tee-ball, foot­ball, soc­cer, hockey, cheer­lead­ing and fish­ing to boys and girls 4 and older.

The gym would be at­tached to the club­house to make it more cost-ef­fect­ive. It would fea­ture a full-length bas­ket­ball court, two side courts, bleach­ers, an ex­pan­ded kit­chen, a small meet­ing room, stor­age space and han­di­capped-ac­cess­ible bath­rooms. The fa­cil­ity would be built on an angle and in such a way that it would not in­fringe on the hockey court or base­ball fields. A bat­ting cage would be re­lo­cated. The build­ing would be roughly 70 feet wide and 120 feet long. It would be used, primar­ily, for bas­ket­ball and in­door soc­cer games and prac­tices.

Dona­tions to the gym fund can be sent to Bustleton Bengals Club, P.O. Box 6103, Phil­adelphia, PA 19115.

For in­form­a­tion, vis­it www.bustleton­ ••

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