September 23, 2009

Candidates hail ESPN's help for boys club

The agreement by ESPN to help build a new Bristol Boys and Girls Club on West Street was hailed by several municipal candidates this week.
Republican mayoral contender Mary Alford called the project “the best way to develop a community.”
“Whenever a large corporate entity like ESPN, who is our city’s largest taxpayer, can partner with a community-based organization like the Boys and Girls Club it becomes a win-win for all, especially for our kids,” Alford said.
Derek Czenczelewski, a 3rd District GOP City Council candidate, said, “This contribution, along with the hours of volunteer work ESPN provides proves that ESPN is committed not only to Bristol, but the youth around the entire region and country for that matter.”
Mayor Art Ward, a first-term Democrat seeking reelection on November 3, said this week’s announcement by ESPN “is the greatest thing that’s happened” during his two years in office.
Ward said the new building will offer “a great start” to plans for improvements in the struggling West End.
He said he’s sure the city itself will wind up offering some help, too.
“This opportunity is facilitated by the city and the state and is the best way to move community projects like this forward instead of relying on things like a government stimulus, “ Alford said.
All three candidates had kind words for the club, which has been searching for a way to move out of its increasingly antiquated Laurel Street headquarters for years.
Czenczelewski said the club “is a great organization that has helped shape the lives of countless individuals today. Having experienced the Boys and Girls Club both as a member and a volunteer in Hartford, I can attest to the positive attitudes and values that make up the club.”
He said the willingness of the club and ESPN to help youth in the community is longstanding.
The candidates each said the change offers hope for more downtown revitalization.
“A new Boys and Girls Club will help further jumpstart our downtown redevelopment initiative, as it will give the youth of Bristol more structured activities to partake in outside of school, a top-notch facility in which to do so, and will give parents the peace of mind that their children are in a safe and positive environment outside of school and the home. All parties involved in this are winning, which is very nice to see,” Czenczelewski said.
Alford said the new building will free up space “for future enhancements” downtown and build support for a project on the city-owned Depot Square, where the mall once stood.
“The space on Laurel Street offers many options for developers to incorporate into the overall project” Alford said.
Czenczelewski concluded that, “Retail, housing and office space are essential in downtown. The young professionals that continue to leave Bristol, and the estimated $100 million spent yearly by Bristol residents outside city borders can be kept here in Bristol. I plan on working with all involved parties to ensure that downtown is a success, and that includes ESPN.”

Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
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Anonymous said...

More Pablum.

How will this affect our taxes?

What do you plan to do about ur taxes?

Anonymous said...

It's really good pablum!

Anonymous said...


The year of the non-campaign.

Anonymous said...


I think that what ESPN is doing is great: my reference to Pablum was the candidates pandering, candidates who had nothing to do with it, candidates who have not been involved in any Boys and Girls club activities.

But if that is what it takes to get votes, good luck to them and to Bristol.

Anonymous said...

Pretty sure Derek mentioned he was a member and a volunteer, so I'm not sure where you are going with that?

Anonymous said...

Pablum spewer: 4:13 & 5:52What are the candidates supposed to do...not comment...then you'd complain about that too. Get a life you pablumhead.

Are you not pandering in your 5:52 post?

Anonymous said...

Why aren't the candidates talking about our dire financial situation?

Or Schools?

Or our deteriorating infrastructure?

Or plans for economic development.

The boys club, however great, is not a government operation, nor should it be.

What impact could the candidates have on the boys club without providing city dollars?

Art wants to help: that will cost money. How much Artie?

Anonymous said...

A million dollars, give or take!

Anonymous said... one cares about one!

Anonymous said...

I care about Stortz.

I'm also very happy about ESPN's decision to help the community.

Anonymous said...


Derek was a volunteer in HARTFORD.

I repeat, a volunteer in HARTFORD.

Why not Bristol?????

Anonymous said...

He was a volunteer in HARTFORD during his time at UConn. Makes perfect sense to me.

Anonymous said...


Why hasn't he volunteerd in Bristol?

Anonymous said...

He has volunteered in Bristol. He was a Parks and Recs baseball coach, Forestville Little League assistant, and he's helped out in various community settings, like the Pequabuck River Cleanup.

Maybe you should read up on him before questioning what he has done.

If you meant why didn't he volunteer at the Bristol BGC, I would imagine it had something to do with the fact that he worked at ESPN and went to school at UConn at the same time, which is an incredible workload for someone that age. Add on top of that that he volunteered during the week and still maintained everything, I'd say that's impressive. If you are truly that interested, why not call him and find out, or email him?

Anonymous said...

Oh, he works at ESPN. Isn;t that a coincidence!