Just 18 months ago, HYPE Athletics broke ground for its new facility in Dearborn Heights .
And on Monday, May 14, the 104,000 square foot facility–located on Warren Avenue just west of Hines Drive–will officially open for business.
A visit to the facility now shows a mixture of a happy calm and frantic preparations. Crews paint walls, pound hammers and talk logistics. HYPE staff–waiting for their new offices to be completed–work at whatever free space they can find.
But even as the finishing touches are added, the foundation paints a clear picture of the vision of HYPE’s newest chapter: a $6.8 million, full-service community center, serving thousands of local families in Wayne County and beyond with everything from sports and recreation to tutoring and mentoring. Adult education, fitness classes and senior offerings round out HYPE’s upcoming programming.
“If you think about when we started in November of 2010 and where we are today in less than 18 months, the progress has been incredible,” said Marketing Director Maysaa Mackie. “It was built from the ground up.”
Much like HYPE itself. Founder and Executive Director Ali Sayed had a vision of providing local youth with after school and summer programming that would enrich their learning and keep them out of trouble. He started the program in Dearborn in 2001.
Now, HYPE Athletics employs around 140 people–including administrative staff, coaches, tutors and mentors. Sayed said that resumes have been pouring in from people eager to get involved with HYPE.
But Sayed and his team are taking things slow, meticulously planning every detail–from the logos on the floor of the 32,000-square-foot gym, to the layout of the upstairs lounge area overlooking Hines Park.
“We’re confident in the plan,” Sayed said. “It’s been our plan since 2006. Mentally, we’re prepared. Physically, we’re prepared.”
But at their first-ever community day at the new facility–held Sunday, April 29–nothing could prepare them for the emotions of seeing nearly 3,000 people who came to see the nearly completed center.
“At the end of the day, we shed tears of joy,” Mackie said. “For it to be open to the public, it didn’t matter if we were pushing a broom or giving a tour–it was a team effort.
“And that’s what HYPE is about.”
HYPE Athletics will host a ribbon cutting and dinner at its new facility on Friday, May 4. The event will run from 5-8 p.m. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased at http://hypeathletics.org. The facility is located at 23302 Warren Ave. in Dearborn Heights.