By: Ingrid Wagner, YC Intern
Another full and monumental summer at Youth Challenge has come to an end! This season was packed with tons of fun, excitement, and adventures. To begin, several YC athletes traveled to Chicago to compete in the Great Lakes Adapted Sports Association Regional Games. They were able to bring home some first place ribbons along with plenty of memorable stories.
The summer party really fired up at Prom, which was run by the Volunteer Committee. They did a fabulous job hosting the event and it is always nice to see everyone dressed up. Of course the formal attire didn’t last for long—West Side Sports, East Side Sports, and Krazy Kamp all started up the following week and continued through the rest of the summer. Bright and early, the participants were ready to bring their A-game in team cheers and adapted sports. Although there were many cool summer days, that didn’t stop the kids from enjoying an afternoon of splashing around in the pool.
The annual Overnight took place at Highbrook Lodge at the end of June. Participants and volunteers love to take a break away from home and hang out with the YC Gang. On July 22, YC participants celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act at Wade Oval. Volunteers, staff members, and participants came together to educate, advocate, and celebrate a day that changed all of their lives forever. The following evening was the annual Regatta Alumni Party at the Edgewater Yacht Club. Being able to catch up with old friends, turn the staff members into human sundaes, and take a sailboat ride on Lake Erie is always YC favorite.
The Summer’s End Bash took place on Saturday, August 8th, a bittersweet party for everyone. Unfortunately, YC had to give heartfelt goodbyes Ashley and Andrea as they take their next steps to graduate school this fall. Many other volunteers and participants are heading off to college. Those signing up for programs in the fall are turning to social media to keep in touch with YC alum.
I personally was able to prove that YC friends are never far with the technology we have today. I reached out to several volunteers and participants and ask them their favorite memories of this YC WOOO-onderful summer!
“My favorite program was the YC Overnight! We were playing spoons with the YC gang and it was amazing!” Andy via Facebook Messenger
“My favorite memory was meeting my friend Sam on his first program (survivor day) and then hanging out at East Side Sports and Swim and the Regatta!” Kendra via iMessage
“My favorite was being Sean’s assistant for Boccia at GLASA in Chicago.” Zac via Instagram Direct Message
“I went on the bus and my favorite driver Jim let me play my music!” Sarah via Facebook Messenger
“My favorite YC summer story is probably just being with everyone at sports and swim because no one is left out and it is so happy and energetic and amazing friendships are made.” Zaria via Instagram Direct Message
“My favorite memory has to be when Keila, who hates taking pictures with anyone finally let me get one with her. It really cheered me up, because this was my last regatta as a participant.” Hannah via Facebook Messenger
“My favorite YC memory is being around my friends and having a great time!” Megan via Facebook Messenger
Reading this, many of you are probably experiencing some summertime sadness, but don’t worry, fall programs start soon enough. Hang in there YC gang, there are many more unforgettable memories to come! See you all soon!