Mayor and City Council Hold Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Renovated Recreation Center
Massive improvements made to the historical recreation center over the past two years include new basketball courts and space for community gatherings
HACKENSACK, NJ -- Monday afternoon, Mayor John Labrosse and the entire Hackensack City Council held a ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil the new and improved Mellone and Mariniello Recreation Center on Holt Street. Members of the Joseph Mellone and Joseph Mariniello families were on hand to commemorate the center’s renovations, as was Deputy Mayor Kathleen Canestrino, Councilman Leo Battaglia, Councilwoman Stephanie Von Rudenborg, Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly, Board of Education member Lance Powell, Superintendent of Schools Robert Sanchez, Assistant Superintendent of Schools Andrea Parchment, former Superintendent Patricia Ruggiero, members of the Fairleigh Dickinson University Men's Basketball team, a representative for Congressman Josh Gottheimer, and Rev. Father Brian Laffler of St. Anthony Padua, who gave a blessing.
After extensive repairs and renovations, the center, which first opened in the 1970’s, can now house a total of 17 programs, featuring a new full-sized basketball court as its main attraction. This basketball court can also double as two half-sized courts. The center is home to many athletic teams but prior to the renovations, there was limited space. Additionally, there is now a space dedicated for seniors, and a game room for teens.
“The ‘M & M’ recreation center has been a cherished landmark for decades, but in recent years, members of the community have expressed concerns that the facility wasn’t providing all it could, so we vowed to improve it, and after thorough renovations, I am proud to welcome this great recreation center to Hackensack,” said Mayor John Labrosse. “With new additions like our full-sized basketball court and a senior programming center, this will be a great space for people of all ages to recreate.”
“From my experience leading youth sports, I know how critical having adequate recreation space can be in the development of our city’s youth. I am so proud of the way all parties, from our contractors, vendors, and the City Manager’s office, came together to restore the Hackensack Mellone-Mariniello recreation center to a top-notch athletic facility,” said Deputy Mayor David Sims. “We have created new programs that will engage people of all ages, including senior citizens, and I am eager to see our residents enjoying this new center.”
Renovations began November 2017, and since that time, the Recreation Department has been operating out of temporary spaces, including the Cultural Arts Center and City Hall. A Grand Opening Ceremony of the center will take place in late summer.