OAKHURST – The start of school brought a great rush of members to the Club this year both new and old, our daily attendance edging over 50 kids! The smoke from the wildfires kept everyone in for a few days where arts & crafts projects flourished, the kids making friendship bracelets, crochet, beading, drawing and coloring.
They also helped Libby Haggard finish up her mural on the backside of our club house facing OCI. What started out last Fall as her YHS senior project went well into summer until she and a few of our kids were able to finish such a large piece! So grateful and thankful for all her diligent and excellent work with our Club, the artwork, and helping our members learn to draw and paint. Best of luck to her as she heads to Sonoma State this Fall, her gorgeous mural will be much appreciated by the Oakhurst BGC and our community for many years to come.
Our summer Books for Bikes program finished up with four winners all receiving brand new Huffy Bikes from the Granville Homes Grant. Congratulations Preston Ensz, Julian Fisher, and Jewell and Alec Mitchell. They spent many hours this summer reading for their bikes and we’re very proud of them.
Early September brought a change in staffing, as Program Assistant Cameron Whitaker moved back to his home town, and Program Assistant April Thompson took a positon at new business Big Kahuna Yogurt here in town. New hires Kimberly Carter and Jennifer Simmons brought the Club right back to action by leading and mentoring our kids with great sports games, arts, crafts, music, garden club, and many other new and staple activities daily on site.
September 11 we held National Day of Service and Remembrance, doing an Oakhurst Parkway Creek Cleanup and making a “thank-you” sign for our firefighters which was hung at the Highway 41/49 junction in town for all to see. Mid-September brought some Fall cleaning projects around the Club, the kids starting by picking up the fallen oak leaves around their skate park.
National BGC Day for Kids fell on September 18, complete with a hot dog BBQ, Open House, fun and games, face-painting and temporary tattoos, and the winners in our superhero drawing contest being announced. We had 58 total members participate in the event, and they and our new staff had a blast.
Friday, September 25, the Club held its Worldwide Day of Play (WWDOP) event sponsored by Nickelodeon. Wi-fi and computers were shut down and all electronic devices put up as BGC members played outside all afternoon. Sidewalk chalk art, karaoke contests, raffles and relays were just some of the events our members participated in. WWDOP turned out to be a beautiful afternoon with much fun had by all!
As late September turned to October our members had their Power Hour Pizza Party for completing their homework during the prior month and the Club had yet another staffing change. After 2.5 years here at the Club, our Unit Director Peggy Decker-Anderson decided it’s time to move on. Jennifer Simmons, who has been a Program Assistant, will be taking over the Unit Director position starting on Monday, October 5.
“I’ve enjoyed my tenure here, have learned a lot as well as mentored a huge portion of our local youth.” says Peggy. “I’ve had great experiences and memories that I’ll always hold dear, and will be taking away a new set of job skills. After an especially momentous past year personally, with both positive and negative, I’ve made the decision I need to spend more time with my husband and family. I will return to substitute teaching, so will still see most of our Club kids, just in a different capacity. Our new UD Jennifer Simmons is enthusiastic, great with the kids, excellent at management and leadership, and has the drive and passion to take the Club far. I’ve had the pleasure of training and working with her and am confident in turning over the reins to such a talented and driven individual. I’d like to give a big thanks to the Oakhurst BGC Board and Joel Rivera and BGC of Fresno County for their continued support and help with our Club site, and wish everyone the very best in the future. It’s been a pleasure serving you all.”