New taxi service provides rides to and from teen center
Dezarae Smith gets ready to ride the Teen Center's new taxi, which takes teens to and from the Fort Riley Middle School Teen Center, from 6 to 9 p.m. every Friday and Saturday during the summer.

FORT RILEY, Kan. - Not having a ride to go hang out with friends will no longer be an excuse thanks to the Middle School Teen Center's new taxi service.

The service, which was initiated from a Teen Focus Group discussion with Col. Kevin Brown, Fort Riley garrison commander, runs from 6 to 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Children can call the teen center to schedule a pick up time at one of 15 locations around the installation.

The taxi service, provided by Child, Youth and School Services, is scheduled to run from now until the start of school.

Every registered youth, who lives on post, is eligible for this service, said Rosalind Wesley, CYSS administrator.

She encourages middle and high school students to use this free service to visit the center.

"We average around 40 plus (teens) during the summer and around 80 plus during the school year," Wesley said.

Teens can call the teen center any time during the day to schedule a pick up time and location, which the center will then book after verifying registration and permission from parents.

"This is a same-day service, so the teens can call at any time to reserve a pick up between the hours of 6 until 9 p.m. When a youth calls, the teen center will give them an approximate wait time for the taxi service," Wesley said.

The Friday and Saturday hours were given based on the demand from the youth, she said.
To take advantage of the taxi service, teens must have their parent(s) complete a one-time permission slip, which can be picked up at the teen center, and will be kept on file.

Depending on the popularity of the taxi service, more stops may be added in the future, Wesley said.

Dezarae Smith, a seventh grade student at Fort Riley Middle School, uses the teen center daily, and said the taxi service is a great new addition to the center.

Smith said it's good for the parents who do not want to bring their teen to and from the center at night.

"My aunt would usually bring me over here (the teen center) all the time," she said. "Now she doesn't have to take me back and forth as often."

If the taxi service wasn't offered, Smith said she would probably stay home, because she lives far away from the teen center.

"I live all the way down on Forsyth, so I can't even walk all the way here. It's great because the taxi picks me up right across the street from where I live," she said.

During the school year, teens can use the bus, which travels from Fort Riley Middle School to the teen center, as well as the van pick-up service from Junction City middle and high schools.

To schedule a pick up time, call the teen center, at 785-239-9222.

Page last updated Thu July 22nd, 2010 at 17:57