Friday, June 15th, I had an inspiring visit to an amazing center for youth in Denver. “Lightning” Lonnie Smith is a retired boxer, and has won a couple of world titles in his boxing days. Listening to Lonnie tell his story was very inspiring to me. He told us how he became a world famous boxer and the obstacles he needed to overcome. His dream was to return to Denver, where he was born and raised, to help kids build a bright future. The fitness center that he opened is in an old YMCA building that the NBA Nuggets used once for training. It has an Olympic sized pool, full size basketball court, locker rooms, full boxing ring room, computer lab, music recording room, full gym, and a large field in back with room to run with a playground. Needless to say, Lightning Lonnie’s Fitness & Learning Center definitely has a lot of potential. This community learning center is a safe place for youth to go and be involved in activities as well as receive a free nutritious meal.
The problem now, is that they need kids in the doors, and unfortunately, the summer meal program is not making that happen as much as we hoped it would. The Summer Food Service Program is vital for communities across Colorado because there is a hidden need that many are unaware of. Lonnie’s vision is to give youth an outlet to learn, play, grow and discover their dreams; and he thinks pulling them off the streets and into this community center is a good place to start, and I completely agree. There is a place for everyone at Lightning Lonnie’s, whether it is boxing lessons, basketball games, day camp, music, homework help, working out; they have it all, and we want to spread the word! For more information, contact Lighting Lonnie’s Fitness & Learning Center at (720) 276-1386 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org