Several organization have partnered to make free teen nights possible. Pictured in front of the climbing wall, from left to right, is Charlie Woodcock, Director of Youth Advocates of Sitka, Dawn Johnsonl, Program Director of Hames Center, and Loyd Platson, Director of the H.O.P.E Coalition. (Photo courtesy of Platson)

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Beginning March 9th, the Hames Center will be open for free every Friday from 8:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. for “Teen Nights.” The center will be open for free to youth aged 13 through high school seniors. Activities include racquetball, walleyball, volleyball, board games, ping pong, basketball, occasional rock climbing and karaoke and space to just “hang out.”

“Our goal was to provide a space for healthy activities and drug-free activities,” said Hames Program Director Dawn Johnson. Some of the funding for the program comes from a Drug Free Communities grant through the HOPE Coalition.

Loyd Platson does prevention work as Sitka Counseling and Prevention Services. “The connections youth have to the community and adults is a protective factor. It’s something we can do,” Platson said.

Four months of funding have been secured. To keep the program going, supporters can contribute through an online GoFundMe campaign here. The Hames Center is also looking for adult volunteers to assist with Teen Night. Those interested can contact Johnson at 747-5080.