LAKE STEVENS — A Lake Stevens teen center that was built with the support of Hollywood star Chris Pratt and many volunteers is closed indefinitely, after a car smashed through the front doors Monday night.
A suspected drunken driver was arrested after crashing into the Dan Pratt Memorial Teen Center at the Lake Stevens Boys & Girls Club.
The teen center will be closed until an inspection is done to determine the extent of the damage and whether it is safe for use, club director Mike Wetmore said Tuesday. Repairs are expected to take months.
Other parts of the club remain open.
“The car went literally right up the steps and through the door of the teen center,” Wetmore said. “That whole wall with the front door got pushed in.”
A damage estimate wasn’t immediately available.
Summer is a busy season for the club. Between 15 and 20 teens have been at the center each day, Wetmore said.
“It’s horrible timing, but we always pull through,” Wetmore said. “They may be enjoying more field trips than usual, going to more parks, movies. We’ll keep them busy and active.”
Officers were dispatched to a report of an explosion at the club overnight, according to the Lake Stevens Police Department. The call came in at 11:25 p.m.
When officers arrived, they found the crash. The driver fled but was quickly apprehended near the post office, police Cmdr. Jeff Beazizo said. A witness helped police track down the suspect, he said.
A Lake Stevens man, 53, was booked into the Marysville Municipal Jail for investigation of DUI and hit-and-run.
The teen center opened at the club in September 2017. Fundraising and planning gained momentum in 2016 when actor Chris Pratt, who grew up in Lake Stevens, held a raffle to win a trip with him to a movie set. That brought in $500,000, on top of nearly $400,000 in state dollars and public contributions. The Dan Pratt Memorial Teen Center is named in honor of Pratt’s father, who died in 2014.
This is the second time in two months the Lake Stevens club has been damaged.
A Memorial Day fire caused $100,000 in damage and was ruled an arson.
Two boys, 13 and 16, were booked into the Denney Juvenile Justice Center in Everett for investigation of setting the fire that first melted two portable toilets next to the youth center’s gym.
Flames climbed into the eaves of the concrete building. Sprinklers soaked the gym floor, which has to be torn out and redone. The outer shell of the building had smoke and heat damage, too. The loss was estimated at $100,000.
The club hopes to reopen the gym in September, Wetmore said.
A fundraising page was set up after the fire and people can continue to donate at classy.org/team/165435.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.