Kevin Collins performs with Yo-Yo Ma during a 2019 event at Berston Field House (Michael A. Naddeo | Mike Naddeo Photography)

FLINT, MI — Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley will sign a new, 25-year lease agreement for Berston Field House, marking the city’s first long-term commitment to Friends of Berston and opening the door for the organization’s continued investment in the historic community center and service to the community.

The public is invited to attend.

The brief celebration will be hosted by Friends of Berston Executive Director Bryant Nolden at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020 inside Berston Field House.

Berston Field House opened in 1923 and was the first Flint community center available to African Americans.  Generations of Flint residents learned to swim and play sports, used the library, made art, attended meetings, and many elite athletes honed their skills at Berston.

The facility closed in 2002 until a group of volunteers, led by Bryant Nolden, began working to revive the historic center. In 2014, Friends of Berston achieved nonprofit status and that same year signed its first lease with the City of Flint to operate the community center.

Berston offers a wide variety of activities including bicycle clubs, fitness classes, art classes, a boxing club, senior line dancing, a chess club and softball tournaments. posts press releases with information directly from businesses, state agencies, political organizations and nonprofits. We do not edit or rewrite press releases. We allow readers to comment...