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Shaq shoots for ‘the right thing,’ plans youth facility in east Las Vegas

Updated July 10, 2024 - 8:42 pm

Basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal’s foundation is set to build a Boys & Girls Club in east Las Vegas, the NBA Hall of Famer said Wednesday.

O’Neal grew up going to a Boys & Girls club where his aunt worked after school, which partly inspired his part in building the 17,000-square-foot facility.

“I love the Boys and Girls Club,” he said during a news conference Wednesday at Monaco Middle School. “When I join a community, I just try to do the right thing. For me it’s not about publicity, it’s not about likes. This is what I was taught.”

The club will be located near the northeast corner of north Lamb Boulevard and Kell Lane, near Cortez, Heard and Diaz elementary schools.

The facility is expected to cost $16 million and will also house the country’s first-ever Communities in Schools alumni center.

Clark County commissioners voted last week to donate nearly 5 acres of vacant land to the Shaquille O’Neal Foundation for the facility.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada President Andy Bischel thanked the commissioners for the land and thanked Gov. Joe Lombardo, the Interim Finance Committee and U.S. Rep. Steven Horsford for their efforts to secure funding for the project.

The facility will provide K-12 students with “academic, social, emotional, recreational, and tech resources needed for youth development,” according to the foundation.

There are 13 Boys and Girls Clubs in Las Vegas, Henderson and North Las Vegas.

The event was attended by several community figures, including City Councilman Cedric Crear, County Commissioner Tick Segerblom, Clark County Sheriff Kevin McMahill and representatives from Lombardo and Horsford’s offices.

Following the news conference, O’Neal joined over a hundred Clark County School District students for an event at the school’s gymnasium.

Contact Taylor R. Avery at TAvery@reviewjournal.com. Follow @travery98 on X.

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