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Delaware Av Boys & Girls Club re-opens this week

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Out of the ashes, the Delaware Avenue Boys and Girls club is back following a fire nearly 2 weeks ago. Starting tomorrow these doors will open once again to welcome teenagers back to the facility.

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“It’s surreal to think like a week ago. We didn’t think we were going to open this gym for our kids to come back in but tomorrow all of this will be kind of cleared out the gym is clean smelling good…” said David Gordon the club’s program director.

He says following countless hours of manpower, after school programs have resumed, and Come Connect Church was able to hold it’s Sunday services in the gym. 

When the gym officially reopens tomorrow night, the club will host a teen night and resume youth sports.

“When teens come back, we got a lot of programs…volleyball, some frisbee, some indoor kickball…” Gordon previewed.

For Gordon who grew up in Albany, the recovery process was a labor of love. 

“I know Albany. I’ve seen the transitions of Albany from the worst that it could be, to now having the opportunity to make a difference in our community to let the youth know that there is a place that you guys can come” the program director said.

Justin Reuter CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of the Capitol Area, broke down for me the logistics of the work that remains. 

“So right now we’re in that planning phase. I’m talking to some contractors and figuring out a timeline to rebuild the areas that were damaged” said the CEO.

The fact that work remains is evident when when you walk out to the blackened part of the building. Bruises, burns and all are still visible. The fire started in a dumpster and spread to the building. Gordon says while the investigation continues … the club has taken measures like swapping out flammable materials to avoid a repeat. 

Zion: You have different fencing now?

David: So different fencing will be coming in. We’ll go chain-link instead of wood…we work with Twin Bridges and they’ve dropped off some metal containers for us.

Overall, Mr. Gordon, ever the optimist – as he says– is looking at the bright side of a bad situation. 

The fact that it confined to an area, but we were still able to conduct business, pay our employees, and things like that, so there’s some silver linings.

“It could have been worse” said David.

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