Donations to Coon Rapids’ Element Teen Center have been recognized by the Coon Rapids City Council.
Warners’ Stellian, which recently opened a store in Coon Rapids, donated some gently used appliances for use at the teen center.
The Coon Rapids Lions Club was also recognized for past donations of Nacho and Icee machines at the teen center.
The new machines have replaced older outdated machines at the teen center, which is located at the city’s Riverwind building on Northdale Boulevard.
Teen center representatives were present at the council meeting to thank Warners’ Stellian and the Lions club for their donations.
Lions club members were also at the meeting.
According to Lori Anderson, Coon Rapids Lions Club president, club members met with teen center officials a couple of months ago to see what their needs were and the Nacho and Icee machines were the result.
“They have been put to good use,” Anderson said.
Kelly Neid, a teen center supervisor, thanked Warners’ Stellian and the Lions club for their support.
The teen center, which is fully staffed, is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 6 to 9 p.m.
Targeting middle and high school-age students, the teen center hosts special events and a variety of activities for teens in the community, including pool, foosball, ping-pong, Play Station 2, karaoke, television, music and games and an eight-ball cafe.
“It is fun and safe place for teens to go,” Neid said. “They have taken ownership of the building.”
The teen center fosters mutual respect and social interaction, while providing a positive experience for teens, she said.
“The teens don’t just come to hang out,” Neid said. “It is a home away from home for them.”
And as one teen at the council meeting put it, “This is the best place in the world and this will make it a little bit better.”
The council passed a resolution accepting the donations with the thanks of Mayor Tim Howe to the donors, Warners’ Stellian and the Coon Rapids Lions Club.
According to Howe, the teen center is near and dear to Councilmember Denise Klint’s heart.
The donated appliances and machines will be well used, Howe said.
Anoka-Hennepin District 11 Community Education operates the teen center with funding from the city of Coon Rapids.
Peter Bodley is at firstname.lastname@example.org