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Murray Journal

Murray Boys & Girls Club raising funds for expansion

Feb 01, 2018 11:20AM ● By Shaun Delliskave

Murray Boys & Girls Club expansion will include a new multi-purpose room. (Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salt Lake)

Joining the winds of change in Murray, the Murray Boys & Girls Club has announced a fundraising effort to expand its facility. The space available for its elementary-aged program is too small to accommodate demand. The club has up to 100 kids on its waiting list, particularly during summer months. The proposed expansion will allow it to immediately serve an additional 100 kids each day.

“Our staff has been very creative and has learned to adapt programming to the space available,” said LeAnn Saldivar, president and CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salt Lake (BGCGSL).

The Murray Club serves about 900 members annually with between 225 and 300 attending daily. These figures include its childcare program (ages 3-7), before- and after-school programs for elementary-aged youth, and its teen center. The club, located next to Murray Park, has been a fixture in the community since its founding in 1967.

“We also rely on out-of-facility field trip activities to reduce the burden on the building.   However, it’s very difficult to conduct effective academic or prevention programs in makeshift places like gymnasiums and large noisy areas,” noted Saldivar.

The planned improvements for the Murray Club include a 10,000-square-foot expansion on two floors on the southwest side of the existing building. The expansion will include a lobby for more secure check-in/out, a new multipurpose/game room, and three classrooms for elementary-aged members. Additionally, renovations of existing areas will include a new STEM lab and more space for teen members.

“The other problem that will be solved with the expansion is the new lobby. We currently have two very small entrance areas that make it difficult for parents to conveniently use the front desk area and for staff to effectively monitor who is entering and leaving the building,” explained Saldivar. “The new lobby will create a single point of entry with a central control desk and adequate space for kids, parents and guests to interact with staff without interfering with programs.” 

BGCGSL announced its multi-million dollar capital campaign to expand facilities to meet growing demand for services in two Salt Lake Valley neighborhoods in November 2017. Private fundraising for the projects began in February 2017, but the campaign was conceived in 2011. Seven years ago, a planning study showed that the Murray community building had more children in need than could be accommodated at the existing building.

The November formal kick-off event included Honorary Campaign Co-Chairs Spencer F. Eccles and Henry S. Hemingway to announce the campaign details and lead gifts as well as to reveal plans for the new expansion in Murray. BGCGSL’s fundraising effort is called the “Great Futures Capital Campaign,” aimed at raising $7 million for both the Murray Expansion and a new facility (to replace the old Capitol West Club) in the Rose Park area of Salt Lake. 

To date, BGCGSL has raised $5.9 million from foundations and individual donors, board members and staff. Two very special “naming” gifts have been pledged: $1.5 million from the George S. & Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation to name the new Capitol West Club and $1 million from the Larry H. and Gail Miller Family Foundation to name the Murray Club.

Founded in 1967, BGCGSL is the largest and oldest Boys & Girls Club organization in Utah and provides a safe place for more than 1,500 kids each day and 7,500 kids annually at eight locations across Salt Lake, Tooele and Carbon counties. The Clubs are affordable for all kids and provide youth with caring adult mentors and life-enhancing programs. 

More information on donating to the BGCGSL fundraiser can be found online at