Comer Youth Center Eager To Host First Lady, NATO Spouses

CHICAGO (CBS) — There’s a buzz on the Gary Comer Youth Center and College Prep campus as students and faculty prepare for a visit from First Lady Michelle Obama and the spouses of other NATO leaders.

“We’re thrilled to be chosen to showcase Comer,” said Executive Director Greg Mooney. “Our center embodies the First Lady’s passion for our nation’s young people.”

The group will be touring the Youth Center and its neighboring Comer College Prep.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding Reports

“We’ll be showing off our fitness center, we’ll have performances. Our young people are involved in every aspect from the greeting to the tours, to showing off their programs, to the performance to the luncheon.”

Valencia Skaife, 16, is putting the finishing touches on her garden that’s she’s cultivated in their urban farm across the street. Some of the student’s food and spices will be served the First Lady and her guests.

“Much of the greens and produce used in the luncheon will come from our own gardens that our youth have prepared and harvested and our culinary students will be working with guest chef Paul Caan on this luncheon,” said Mooney.

Gary Comer Youth Center opened in 2006. Comer College Prep opened with its first class of freshman in 2009.

Michelle Obama grew up not far away, in a bungalow in the South Shore neighborhood.

Now, Mrs. Obama wants to spotlight what students from her old neighborhood can achieve.

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