NEWS RELEASE   4/6/2011

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Flint City Councilman Bryant Nolden-3rd Ward
(810) 766-7418 ext. 3161

Julia Zaher, Director of Volunteer Services
Resource Genesee, (810) 232-6285

Flint, Michigan-April 4, 2011 - Historic Berston Field House is in need of a makeover! Thanks to donated paint and supplies plus volunteer painters the lower interior level of the field house will begin to get a new coat of paint on April 15 and 16.

Berston is home to boxing, basketball, dance and baseball programs. Opened in 1923, it is on the list of Michigan’s registered historic sites. It continues to be a central point of community events and athletic programs.

Third Ward Flint City Councilman Bryant W. Nolden has been spearheading the effort to repaint the interior of Berston. “This is a great facility but it needs a little T.L.C.,” Nolden said.

Working with city union leaders, Nolden developed an agreement that allows volunteers to help paint the facility.

“We know the city can’t afford to do everything that needs to be done. But there are a lot of good people who are willing to lend a hand. I’m asking everyone to sign up and join us for a few hours on the weekend of April 15 and 16,” Nolden said.

Patrick Gerace, City of Flint Parks and Recreation Director, is pleased to see so many in the community willing to dedicate their time and resources to this effort. “Berston is such an asset to this community. For decades it has been a training ground for generations of athletes, many who have gone on to achieve the highest professional ranking in their respective sport,” Gerace said. “Our community partners and volunteers are doing more than providing a fresh coat paint, they helping to ensure that Berston will be around to service many more generations of athletes.”

The Genesee Regional Chamber of Commerce worked with some of their partners to obtain and donate the paint for this project. “We are delighted to contribute to the preservation of such a historic facility,” said Steve Flynn, Director, Member Services, Genesee Regional Chamber of Commerce. “We want Berston Field House to be in good shape and available to youth and sports enthusiasts for generations to come.”

Genesee County Habitat for Humanity is also assisting with paint donations.

Resource Genesee, the volunteer center for Genesee County is coordinating and scheduling volunteers. “That weekend includes Global Youth Service Day. We’d love to see youth groups with teens 15 and older sign up to participate,” said Julia Zaher, Director of Volunteer Services at Resource Genesee. “Anyone under 18 does need a signed parental consent form. And there’s plenty of work for adults who’d like to join in.”

Volunteers can sign up for a four-hour shift, 9am-1pm or 1pm-5pm on either April 15 or 16. Those interested should contact Julia Zaher at (810)232-6285, to register and obtain consent forms.

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