Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Photos: Big names dedicate Boys & Girls Club after Terrance Roberts charged with shooting

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The result of all that community work, all that pride, was unveiled yesterday. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver had secured a hundred-year lease on the land from the ULC, and broke ground on the Nancy A. Anschutz Center in October 2012. While the Jack A. Vickers Boys & Girls Club is taking the majority of the space in the center at 3331 Holly Street, additional partners will also serve the community from the center, which includes a state-of-the-art gymnasium, a teen center, meeting rooms, a kitchen and workrooms equipped with computers, sewing machines and other equipment for the kids who'll be gathering here.

"The work we can and must do in our communities to ensure Denver children will grow to lead productive lives is of great importance. The need for this center and for organizations like the Boys & Girls Club has never more critical," says Hancock. "Many different people and organizations have worked to make this happen. Now we must get to work, creating change in this community and helping all our kids envision and achieve a brighter future."

Roberts was once one of those neighborhood kids. A one-time shot-caller in the Park Hill Bloods, he'd turned his life around and founded the Prodigal Son Initiative, an anti-gang youth program working in Park Hill. Westword profiled Roberts and the rebirth of Holly Square in "Up From the Ashes," a 2010 cover story; earlier this year, when Roberts warned that Prodigal Son was in a budget crunch, we called him one of "Denver's greatest comeback stories."

But now that story has another chapter. On Friday, September 20, 37-year-old Roberts was arrested just yards from the center after he allegedly shot 22-year-old Hasan Jones during a confrontation at a unity rally. Yesterday he was formally charged with attempted first-degree murder, first-degree assault, and possession of a weapon by a previous offender; released on a $100,000 bond, he's scheduled to appear in court on Monday, October 7.

Meanwhile, back at the 3300 block of Holly Street, the Boys & Girls Club will be open for business, working to keep the next generation of kids safe and off the streets, working to keep the Holly rising up from the ashes. Continue to see more photos from the dedication of the new Boys & Girls Club, courtesy of Free Lunch Photography.
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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun