Onorato, who allocated $1 million to the project during his last term in office, officially opened the George Onorato Aquatic Center on Sunday, Sept. 16.
“I'm so pleased that this organization exists today,” Onorato said, who praised the club for the positive impact it had on young people's lives. “This is keeping our youngsters off the streets.”
Incidentally, Onorato actually had a hand in building the club in the 1950s when he was part of the bricklayer's union.
Terry Hughes, executive director of the club, said he was very excited for the opening of the pool, along with the growing number of children joining the organization.
Hughes said the project was finished over the summer after an entirely new structure was put in place.
“It was really great to see the improvements in place,” Hughes said, who added that children had already been utilizing the pool for the past six weeks.
With various political figures and members present for the ceremony, many remembered the club's beginnings.
“People started this club because they decided it was a way to keep our young people from getting into bad things and it grew from there,” said Tony Meloni, a former member of the club who had become a director years later.
Meloni added that the board is hoping to renovate other parts of the facility in the near future. “Things are amazing and things are happening because people care so much,” he said.
The Gloria D’Amico Kid’s Day Event at the club took place from 1 till 4pm. Gloria D’Amico was one of the biggest benefactors for the Boys & Girls Club and her family has helped kept the tradition alive. Dozens of families participated in the ‘Fun Day’ Sunday. There were contests, food and plenty of swimming.
To find out more about the organization, check out their website at www.vbgcq.org. HYPERLINK "http://www.vbgcq.org/"