New Jersey Congressman and Coast Guard Captain to square off in Basketball Game

Coast Guard Training Center Cape May NewsCAPE MAY, N.J. – A New Jersey congressman and the commanding officer of U.S. Coast Guard Training Center Cape May will face off in a basketball blowout to mark the opening of the training center’s newly renovated gymnasium Friday at 1 p.m.

U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey’s 2nd Congressional District and Capt. Bill Kelly, commander of Training Center Cape May, will go head-to-head in the newly renovated training facility during a full-court basketball game. LoBiondo and Kelly will be joined by crewmembers from the training center who get the opportunity to play alongside the congressman and captain. City of Cape May Mayor Edward J. Mahaney, Jr., will also be attending to toss up the first tip-off ball of the game and act as a guest official for the game.

“Training Center Cape May’s gymnasium is a multi-purpose facility, which is critical to the unit’s missions of training future Coast Guardsmen, supporting its 14 tenant commands, developing the crew both personally and professionally, and making Cape May the best place to live, work and visit,” said Kelly. “The completion of this facility marks a significant milestone in improving the training center to better meet the needs of the Coast Guard and the American people.”

This renovation is the first time the gym has been updated in more than 31 years, and it provides some important quality of life and aesthetic upgrades. The most important upgrade is to the gymnasium’s heating and cooling system, which will provide air conditioning and heating to the entire facility during winter and summer months. The gym’s basketball court has received numerous aesthetic and functional renovations, which include new flooring, new bleachers, new goals and new artwork on the walls. The basketball court serves as an indoor graduation site, an indoor training facility for recruits, a recreational facility for Coast Guardsmen and their families, and a meeting hall for crewmembers.

The total cost of the renovations was $3.7 million, and they were completed by a mixture of local, regional and national contractors. The roof and air conditioning system was repaired by J2 Engineering from Tampa, Fla. The basketball court was renovated by West Bay Construction from Linwood, N.J., which hired local labor for this project. The artwork in the gymnasium was done by Cape Signs from Millville, N.J.

Service members, employees and Coast Guard families from commands all across the base will be attending the hour-long ceremony, and the recruits from the senior company on base, Foxtrot 186, will also get a break from training to attend the event.

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