All-Star Game to benefit local communities

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Major League Baseball is planning to bring more than just entertainment to Queens during the All-Star Game and events next week.

The MLB is partnering with the New York Mets Foundation to support charitable initiatives in Queens that will fund recovery efforts from Sandy, impact the lives of underserved youth and local veterans, and help fund a local veterans’ center as a part of its $4 million Legacy Projects.

The 84th Mid-Summer Classic will “leave a lasting legacy benefiting communities throughout New York City and beyond,” the league said in a statement.

MLB is planning to renovate the baseball fields in Hinton Park in Flushing and O’Donohue Park in Far Rockaway. The two fields in Hinton Park will receive new Astroturf, new home plates, bases, a portable pitching mound, repairs to the fencing, and improvements to bleachers, walls and handrails. The renovations at O’Donohue Park, which will be done with assistance from Scotts, include new infield sand mix, regrading the infield and grass outfield to facilitate drainage, fixing the new soil, adding a new dugout fencing, and refurbishing the outfield fencing and bleachers.

The league will also upgrade the outdoor green space and recreation area, including accessibility modifications, and add an enclosed patio to the Veterans Affairs New York Harbor Healthcare System in St. Albans.
With assistance from Magical Builders, the MLB will facilitate the building of a new 3,000- square-foot Teen Center and Cafe at the Boys & Girls Club of Metro Queens.

Formerly the South Queens Boys & Girls Club, the organization has embarked on a $11.5 million capital improvement project and will be opening its new building in January 2014.

The Mets and the MLB are donating $250,000 toward a new Teen Center in the building, which will include a technology lab, a college lab, classroom space, a lounge and a viewing balcony overlooking the new gymnasium.

“The teen center will offer job readiness training, college tours, dance and music classes, leadership clubs, fashion shows, and much more,” said Carol Simon. “This club has already served over 50,000 children in its 57 year existence. Thanks to this new building, thousands of additional children in the years to come will make this their second home.”



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