(Santa Maria, CA) Oct 13, 2016- Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Maria Valley hosted their 28th Annual Back-a-Youth Nite at their Railroad Club. The event paired 86 youth Club members with adult mentors from the community. The event gave the mentors a chance to interact with Club members and experience what it is like to attend BGCSMV on a daily basis.

The event started with the Band of Brothers Color Guard presenting the American & California flags. After the National Anthem, Liset Vasquez, BGCSMV’s 2016 Youth of the Year led the Pledge of Allegiance.

All activities were based on BGCSMV’s model for positive youth development. For Health & Life skills, the teams learned to make a chicken salad. The Arts activity involved a photographic scavenger hunt. The groups put together care packages for the homeless for the Character & Leadership activity. The Sports & Recreation activity included relay sprints & sit-ups. The Education & Career Development project was building a straw rocket incorporating STEM principles. All the activities were learning based yet fun for the participants.

Panda Express, Coca Cola & Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt provided dinner.
DJ Zapp was the master of ceremonies and Grand Celebrations brought a photo booth so both mentors & mentees received a photo souvenir. After all the activities there was a prize raffle including two bicycles donated by Tailwinds Bicycle Club. The Club members also received a goodie bag filled with many items donated by the community including swimming passes, Straw Hat Pizza coupons and See’s Candy.

The BGCSMV Railroad Advisory Committee hosted the event. Committee Chairperson Amy Lopez stated, “Back a Youth is my favorite event every year.  It is such a pleasure to see the smiles and hear the cheers of the kids.  That is what this is all about!  As a former club member, I take pride in BGCSMV programming.  I would like to thank all of our sponsors, club staff, and all of our mentors for making this event a huge success year after year.  Most importantly, I would like to thank the families of Santa Maria who continue to share their kids with us!”


Jeremy Deming, Executive Director of BGCSMV said, “Our 28th Annual Back-a-Youth Nite was an amazing success! To see the impact our volunteer mentors have on the youth we serve is truly inspiring. This event would not be possible without the dedication and commitment of our Railroad Club’s Advisory Committee led by Amy Lopez. She and her fellow committee members work tirelessly to ensure our kids have a memorable experience at Back-a-Youth Nite. This event directly connects the youth we serve to the stakeholders who support them. I would like to thank our sponsors including Pacific Petroleum, Shoes for Students, Panda Express, and many others. Without their support, this event would not have produced such an optimal outcome.”

Sponsors of the event included Pacific Petroleum, Aera Energy, Henry Mayo Newhall Foundation,Woods Family Foundation, Shoes for Students, AgRX, BGCSMV Alumni Committee, Famco Development, Jesse Medina, Kohl’s, L&M Motors, Pacific Western Bank, Pea King Produce, Sims Physical Therapy, Smith Electric, V Lopez Jr & Sons, Panda Express, Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt,Coca Cola Refreshments, Tail Winds Bike Club, DJ Zapp, Grand Celebrations, Crosby Investment Group, Central Coast Electric, Creative Construction, Galvan & Cornelius, Honda of Santa Maria, Moats Laser, Nancy Boster State Farm, Plantel Nurseries, Santa Maria Foursquare Church, Toyota of Santa Maria, Trojan Petroleum, Vince & Amy Lopez, Alvarado’s, Ogden Wealth Management, Linda & Mike Cordero, Ontiveros’, Simplot, Tim Murphy, David Bixby, City of Santa Maria, Rancho Bowl, Ron & Sylvia Ng, Santa Maria Bonita Schools, Santa Maria Library, Straw Hat Pizza and Wells Fargo Bank.

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Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Maria Valley currently provides programs for over 1,400 registered children ages 6 – 18 at 10 locations in Santa Maria and Guadalupe. An additional 6,900 children benefit from Club sponsored sports programming.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Maria Valley’s mission is to enable all young people, especially those that need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible, & caring citizens. For more info on BGCSMV, please call 805-354-7421 or visit bgcsmv.org