AKRON, Ohio — The LeBron James Family Foundation (LJFF) has formed a new partnership with an Akron event center to bring students a space to play and learn.
LJFF has teamed up with The Tangier on West Market Street in Akron to build a new multi-use sports complex and community space. The top of Tangier’s parking deck will be converted into the new sports complex, featuring basketball courts, play areas and interactive outdoor spaces.
“We are so excited about this opportunity to create something unique and innovative at The Tangier for our students and families. It fits so many of our needs in terms of a safe, multi-use facility for the I PROMISE School students’ physical activities that is also a community space for our family events,” LJFF Executive Director Michele Campbell said in a statement. “As our family continues to grow every year, it’s getting harder to find a space that can accommodate all of us at once. The Tangier not only has the space, but also the passion for our families, so it’s a perfect fit.”
The foundation tells 3News that as the I Promise family continues to grow, it has become a challenge to find additional space to accommodate students.
James surprised students last year with the announcement of a new gym at the I Promise School, but due to limited space and parking the foundation decided to create a partnership with The Tangier. The original $1 million grant from DICK’S Sporting Goods and another $1 million contributed by The J.M. Smucker Co. will be reallocated to build the new complex.
The ballroom inside the event center will also be the future site of LJFF’s monthly HomeTown Hall events. The Tangier will still be available to book weddings and other events.
“As a family owned business serving Akron for more than 70 years, family has always been at the root of our mission. Having the opportunity to work with the LeBron James Family Foundation to serve the community and their families fits perfectly in line with what we’re about,” said General Manager Angelica George said in a statement. “We will continue to book wedding receptions, private events, and entertainment, but we are excited to be a part of this incredible family.”
The foundation notes the new location is within walking distance of the I Promise School and sits just a few blocks from the future I Promise Village that is set to provide housing to students and their families.