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.bustletonbengals.org ••