Claremont Junior Sports League's future up in the air
A group of volunteers known as the Junior Sports League run activities in the building such as roller skating on Fridays and Sundays. The city also uses the building for basketball games.
Yvonne Shuey, Chairwoman of the Junior Sports League Board, said she and the other volunteers that manage the building are devastated by what Neilsen has said. Accusations of there being mattresses on the floor on the third floor of the building are untrue, she said.
Management of the building is under city scrutiny after funds increased dramatically to the Junior Sports League over the previous 18-month budget.
The city started using the building for other uses more than 50 years ago when Neilsen was just a child growing up down the street from the former armory, he said.
Shuey said the Junior Sports League works hard to maintain the building and refinishes the floors every summer. The JSL also runs state background checks on every volunteer, she said.
Skating at $3.50 a child is offered Friday nights and Sunday afternoons during the school year.
“Cause we’d rather them be inside skating, than up on Pleasant Street getting in trouble,” Shuey said.
The volunteers care about the children and want to continue to offer a safe, fun place for children, she said.
Friday night attendance ranges from 30 to 90 children, she said. If the heat and electricity is not funded, the JSL cannot resume roller-skating in the fall, she said.
There were bed sheets covering the windows, as if to make sure light coming from the room isn’t seen at night, Neilsen said.
The room also appeared to have black mold, he said.
In reviewing the Junior Sports League, city officials also learned that Shuey had up until recently been renting part of the building for her ceramics businesses at a low rate and some months for in-kind cleaning services.
Shuey said she only ran the make-your-own ceramic business in the building five hours a week. It was an activity for children, and if a child couldn’t afford it, she would let them do it for free.
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