Rubonia Community Center Reopens for Summer Youth Program

  • Jun 13, 2016

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (June 13, 2016) – After months of coordination with the Rubonia Community Association, Inc., Manatee County will reopen the Rubonia Community Center this summer for a youth drop-in program that will run June 20 - July 29.

 

 Manatee will host a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, June 20 at the Community Center, 1309 72nd St. E., Palmetto. The program will serve school-aged children who live in the Rubonia area, but others may attend as capacity allows. 

 
In May, Manatee County Commissioners unanimously approved $75,000 for Community Center building and grounds renovations. The first round of renovations and repairs included new air conditioners, a new kitchen, windows, plumbing, ceiling, doors, furniture, a temporary roof repair along with the baseball field. To assist with program services the Commission also provided $22,304 for the 8 week program.
 
“We’re happy to have the grand opening of the center. As we continue with our planning we hope to build relationships with the community,” said Mary Brown, Rubonia Community Association chairwoman. “Rubonia has a GoFundMe page in which all funds raised will be used to help run and maintain the center.” 
 
“The Association has begun working on a formal business and fundraising plan,” said Cheri Coryea, Neighborhood Services director. “Once completed and implemented the County can evaluate the organization’s ability for potential conveyance of the community center for permanent operations. We’re extremely encouraged by the level of involvement by the Association members and their commitment to become a sustainable organization.”
 
In August 2014, Manatee County took possession of the community center which had been owned by the School District of Manatee County and has since been seeking a permanent operator. In the fall of 2015, a process called an Invitation to Negotiate or ITN was initiated which received one respondent. When negotiations failed this past Spring with the respondent, the County began working directly with the Rubonia Community Association which is a 501(c)3 registered with the state of Florida. 
  
Once the center is closed for the summer, the County will continue renovations as funds are available. Staff has requested an additional $75,000 to complete renovations such as roof replacement, a new computer lab and air conditioning and is reviewing the option of $50,000 for program operations that could be expanded to all ages. 
 
For more information on Manatee County Government, visit online at www.mymanatee.org or call (941) 748-4501. You can also follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/manatee.county.fl and on Twitter, @ManateeGov.