HACKENSACK - On Sat., Sept. 14, Mayor John Labrosse and the Hackensack City Council officially cut the ribbon on the new and improved Mellone-Mariniello Recreation Center at 116 Holt St., which was opened last month after almost two years of extensive renovations.

Members of the Joseph Mellone and Joseph Mariniello families were present to honor the work done renovating one of the city’s most notable landmarks. 

The Improved space hosts events for youth, seniors and community organizations.

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“Our open house was a huge success, but we want residents to utilize the state-of-the-art M&M Recreation Center year-round. The M&M Center is a Hackensack-landmark, and this new renovation shows how committed, we are to creating a beautiful and safe environment for our residents,” Labrosse said.

“Our residents of all ages will find something of interest from our new full-sized basketball court and a senior programming center.” 

After extensive repairs and renovations, the center, which first opened in the 1970’s, can now house a total of 17 programs, featuring a new full-sized basketball court as its main attraction. This extra-wide basketball court can also be split in half by a divider to make two full size high school regulation courts, which will also be used for two regulation high school volleyball courts. The center is home to many athletic teams but prior to the renovations, there was limited space. Additionally, there will be a space dedicated for seniors, and a game room for teens.   

The new gym, several Hackensack teams and youth cheerleading squads enjoyed using the space. A zumba class was also offered to attendees by Osiris Barcenas, a private instructor. The Harlem Wizards enjoyed access to the state-of-the-art-facility and played the Hackensack Youth Basketball All Stars. 

“An adequate recreation space is critical in the development of our city’s youth,” Deputy Mayor David Sims said.

“The new programs that we have created will be engaging for people of all ages, especially our senior citizens who are the backbone of our community. It is amazing how all parties came together to finally have this project completed. This center will be the envy of neighboring towns.”