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Booker

People participates in an event at the Booker T. Washington Community Center in Auburn in 2017.

The Booker T. Washington Community Center in Auburn will receive state grants totaling to $3.75 million for after school program funding over the next five years.

Denise Farrington, the center's executive director, said Thursday that the grants add up to $750,000 a year for the next five years. She said the money will allow the center's six sites to continue providing services for children. Activities from the center include homework help, a basketball league, musician Jim Van Arsdale teaching music lessons over the summer, and activities such as acting classes and yoga at Auburn Public Theater in the past. 

The funds are among a flurry of recent good news for the center, as the organization's facility on Chapman Avenue was sold by the Auburn city government to the center's board of directors in July. It was also announced earlier this week that Five Star Bank also recently donated $15,000 to youth programs at the center.

The grants are called Advantage After School grants. Including the center's summer program, the organization served 700 children in Auburn last year. Farrington said she was thrilled by the grants.

"I think it's just such a good thing for Auburn that we were able to secure these grants ... because it just shows that our kids are being served," she said.

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Staff writer Kelly Rocheleau can be reached at (315) 282-2243 or kelly.rocheleau@lee.net. Follow him on Twitter @KellyRocheleau.

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