takes a village to raise a child.
That is an old African proverb
signifying a united vested
interest in assuring that every child is well cared for by the extended
of a community. It was echoed
at the City of Opa-locka’s grand opening ceremony for Sherbondy Village on Thursday,
November 15, 2012.
Elected officials throughout Miami-Dade County
said Sherbondy Village is a community center, long in the making, for Opa-locka
families. “This facility will give parents more choices for afterschool and
summer programs,” said Mayor Myra L. Taylor in a statement about the facility. “Our community
can enjoy more sports and cultural arts programs at the Village.”
new 28,000 sq. ft. facility offers afterschool programs, and an aquatic program
is scheduled to launch in May 2013. The
two-story facility includes a gymnasium, a 250 seat black box theater,
community pool and additional rooms for games and activities.
city’s Parks and Recreation department will move its offices to the new
Following a poem offered by a youth from Dr.
Robert B. Ingram Elementary and an anti-bullying
skit performed by students from Nathan B. Young Elementary.
moment four local high school bands marched onto the field, to the last
perfected note in an upbeat musical challenge, the “village” crowd cheered for
their favorite school as the bands showcased their talent during the renown “Battle
of the Bands” segment of the grand opening ceremony. More than 280 band members from Hialeah-Miami
Lakes, Miami Northwestern, Miami Norland and Miami Carol City performed at their level best prior to official ribbon cutting
concept for Sherbondy Village has been long in the making. Ideas about bringing a multi-use facility to
Opa-locka residents surfaced around 1996 under Dr. Robert Ingram’s tenure as
commission at that time had an idea to build a gymnasium near Segal Park on 143rd
Street; however, funding for that project eventually fell through.
concept shifted, as more funding was secured, and an idea that was on hold for
a while came back to life.
2004, the idea resurfaced again when the city secured a Community Development
Block Grant from the county with the help of County Commissioner Barbara
Jordan. By this time, the city sought to purchase the land where the old
library sat – the same location that is now home to Sherbondy Village. The city was interested in rehabilitating the
old library into a gymnasium. Problems with the project placed the concept on
as time marched forward, the city was able to secure additional funding. As a
result, the project grew from just a gym to include a community swimming pool.
Timothy Holmes is credited for creating the concept that the facility is to be
a “village”. Consequently, the name Sherbondy Village became
$4.3 million facility was developed with funds through the county’s Safe
Neighborhood Park Bond Program, County General Obligation Bond, a Community
Development Block Grant and funding from Opa-locka’s general fund.
construction was completed last year and inside renovations ended in the early
part of 2012. Using the facility was on
hold until the city completed upgrades to a
sewer pump station which was finished in September.
open to the public, Sherbondy Village serves Opa-locka and the surrounding
facility is dedicated to former Mayor Joseph L. Kelley, now currently serving
as vice mayor, and his mother, former Commissioner Ollie B. Kelley.
For more information on the
programs and hours of operation at Sherbondy Village, contact the City of Opa-locka
Parks and Recreation Department at (305) 953-3042.