Teens in Richmond Hill now have a place to go after school where they can play games, do homework or just hang out.
Bryan County Family Connection held a grand re-opening of its teen center Thursday. The program is for middle and high school students ages 11 to 18.
The center is housed in the Jacob Grant Community Center at 185 Ball Park Road, tucked behind the baseball fields near the South Bryan Recreation Department building.
“Everything here is donated and there’s no fee to attend,” said Amanda Younger, the center’s director. “It’s a great place for teens to come and hang out after school and relax.”
The center features foosball, pool, air hockey, ping pong and video games. There are also tables and chairs where students can do homework, as well as a basketball hoop outside. Teens are also able to use the tennis courts and skate park nearby. Snacks are usually available, especially those donated by parents.
It is open to teens from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. A bus from Richmond Hill Middle School arrives at the center around 4 p.m., while it is close enough for high school students to walk over.
Parents and students do have to register and agree to behavior guidelines, but other than that they are free to come and go.
“They can sign in and out as they like,” Younger said. “Sometimes they’ll sign out and walk up to Parker’s to buy something and then come back.”
Younger said the center is hoping to extend its hours and it will be open during the summer.
“It’s a safe space for them to have fun and socialize,” she said. “It’s a nice alternative to them being home alone or just roaming their neighborhoods.”
The center also is open during the day for a variety of reasons, including play groups for stay-at-home parents with toddlers and as classroom space by a local homeschool cooperative.
Call 756-3838 for more information.