2008-02-21 / Letters to the Editor

Thanks to town for new teen center

If you haven't heard already, the Jamestown Teen Center is officially finished and open for teens Monday through Friday at the Jamestown Recreation Center! Our Grand Opening celebration was a huge success and we were so happy to finally cut the ribbon! I would like to send my thanks to everyone who attended the opening, including Town Council members Julio DiGiando, Barbara Szepatowski, Bob Sutton and Michael White, Town Administrator Bruce Keiser, Representative Bruce Long and all of the parents and residents who came to show their support. Over 180 teens came out to enjoy a great party and celebration!

I could never have gotten through the night without the help of so many adult volunteers who helped plan, chaperone, gather food and clean-up afterwards. Thank you to Bev Rudman, Mary and Martin Keen, Gaeli and David Greene, Judy and Chuck Reppe, Larry Bartley, Ana Irwin, Duval DiGasper, Eleanor Hanson, Matt and Linda Jamison, Durga Larkin, Marisa Quinn, Diane Grippi, Kristin and Kerry Sheehan, Robin Tregenza, Andrea vonHohenleiten, Samira Hakki and anyone I may have missed.

Before the big event, and for over a year, there were many who really made the Teen Center come together. Without the generous support from Ron DiMauro, the construction may never have begun. Ron Parfitt, Andrew Rushton, and Ramon Ibarlucea, who did everything from demolition and construction to the final cleaning and painting, deserve a huge thank you for their job well done! Special thanks to my wonderful parents Don and Heather Minto, Bill Piva, Andrea Masterson, Jill Goldstein and Stephanie Nocon for all of their support, organization, encouragement and laughter!

Thank you to the Jamestown Police Department, the Rotary Club of Jamestown, Gary Gagne and Flint Audio in Newport, Cardi's Furniture, the Jamestown Junior Women's Club, the Jamestown Yacht Club and everyone else who has supported teens by purchasing tiles. A special thank you from the teens to Barbara Szepatowski for the donation of appliances, including a refrigerator stocked full of everything a teen could want!

I was thrilled to learn that the Rhode Island Foundation's Newport County Fund has decided to continue our funding for the project for the next two years, ensuring that the Teen Center will blossom as a base for teen programming. My final thank you goes out to the many teens that have made this project a reality, from start to finish. Without you, we never would have known what it was you were looking for. Congratulations!!

Melissa Minto Jamestown Teen Coordinator

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