MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Parents of children involved in a community marching band club are demanding answers from the City of Mobile after they said the air conditioning has been broken at their practice facility for some two weeks.
The James M. Seals Recreation Center, also known as the Texas Street Recreation Center, is a place for a number of activities for kids and adults alike, including basketball, fitness classes, piano lessons, and dominoes tournaments, and is run by the City of Mobile Parks and Recreation Department. Rec center officials confirmed with FOX10 that a number of those activities have had to be cancelled temporarily due to the broken A/C.
The Texas Street Marching Band also practices at the rec center, and parents of kids in the club are upset, because they feel the facility is unsafe for their children to practice in during the summer heat.
“It’s very frustrating, because as you can tell, it’s extremely hot, they have to practice, because we do excellent performances, they have to practice, and it’s hard to ask the parents to bring their child here (when) it’s extremely hot,” said Felicia Paul, a band parent. “It’s not safe.”
Parents also told FOX10 they have not been notified as to when the A/C will be fixed, and they want city officials to be more transparent about the problem.
Parents explain the program is important for the community, and the kids participating in the band deserve to at least have a safe place to practice.
“(Some parents) are willing to pull their kids out of the band, and that’s something we don’t want to do, because it’s good for these kids to be in something active, than to be out here on the streets getting in trouble,” said Shaquita Montgomery, another band parent.
FOX10 News Reporter Kati Weis called city officials Tuesday afternoon, August 26, about the issue, and was told the city is waiting on a part for the A/C unit, and it’s unclear as to when that part will come in. No city official was available for any further questions.