Dunbar Neighborhood Center officially reopens - CBS46 News

Dunbar Neighborhood Center officially reopens

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ATLANTA (CBS46) -

Hundreds of kids joined Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed Saturday for the official re-opening of the Dunbar Neighborhood Center.

Some people described the old center as a dungeon and that's not exactly a good way to describe a place for kids.

"If you had to come you would come but it wasn't something like 'oh gosh I want to be there," said Christopher Abbott.

But thanks to Mayor Reed, and a great public-private partnership the center got a much needed facelift.

"It's the total opposite of what it was," said Abbott.

The facelift includes a new computer lab, new basketball court, and one particular addition that's a favorite among the kids this summer.

"I like the new swimming pool," said Travone Epps.

Amiyah Abbott agreed. She said, "My favorite thing to do is swimming."

Some kids said they've been coming to the center almost every day this summer. The mayor said that's exactly what he hoped for.

"This is where we have to be doing if we really want to keep our kids off the streets and in a structured environment," said Reed.

"This was an unsafe place, but now it's a safe place for families and kids, said Gale Hayes, the director of the Atlanta Civic site for the Annie Casey Foundation.

But kids aren't the only ones benefiting from it. Parents said its good for them too.

"You can work out, get daycare, go to the ball park here with your family. They are willing to help bring that throughout the community and I love that for me and my family. It's brought our family together a whole lot better," said Deanna Epps.

But what about education?

There's not much going on for the summer, but workers at the center said they've already got a plan in place for when school gets started.

"They sign up for the after school program, they do homework for about an hour or two, then they can go do basketball or whatever. By the time they get home they're tired from what they did all day so they get home and it's time to go to bed," said Christopher Abbott.

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