Boys and Girls Club (BGC) of the Mondak in Sidney has a busy winter ahead, with a winter clothing drive underway, two escape rooms coming up, and Giving Trees located at local banks and credit unions.

Looking ahead, the club is also focused on sprucing up the house next door for a teen center and providing community support for four-day school weeks.

“We’re definitely going to be part of the equation and will have the club open on Fridays when there’s no school,” Elaine Stedman, BGC executive director said.

BGC has capacity for 300 children, however, they are not able to accommodate that number with current staff. The school and club are working toward a solution.

“We’re going to work out some kind of cooperative situation where they help us with some staffing, help us with meal prep,” Stedman said. “It’s definitely going to be a joint effort between the school and us. How exactly that’s going to look at this point, we don’t know.”

Stedman said she anticipates student needs with four-day weeks to fall into a three-tiered system: Monday-Thursday students, Monday-Friday students, and just Friday students.

“There’s probably going to be three different price structures,” she said. “Once again, that’s all having to be worked out. We have a lot of balls in the air to figure out how it’s going to look. It’s going to work, but what it’s going to look like, we don’t know.”

Winter clothing drive

A winter clothing drive is currently underway at Boys and Girls Club, where coats, boots, hats, gloves and other winter gear is being collected for those in need. The items collected are free and accommodate all genders, ages and sizes.

“The whole basement of our parsonage if filled with winter gear,” Stedman said.

Monetary and gently-used or new clothing donations can be dropped off at the clubhouse for the drive. Stedman said the event was something the schools used to do, but have been unable to attend to the need recently. The winter clothing drive fits in well with BGC’s mission, she said.

“It’s free for all ages,” Stedman said. “Most people have been kids but we’ve served some adults too.”

As long as the club is open, people are welcome to come make arrangements for donations or to find winter gear to use.

Monetary donations for the club can be made at richlandbgc.org. Don’t forget to visit the website on #GivingTuesday, Dec. 3, when donations will be matched.

Escape rooms

BGC is gearing up for their annual escape rooms. This year’s two rooms will be themed “Stranger Things” and “Polar Express.”

Cost is $20 per person or groups of six will be $110. The escape rooms will be open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and operate on volunteer help.

“They’re going to be open very soon. We’re not sure. We are tentatively shooting for next weekend,” Stedman said.

The rooms should be open within the first couple weeks of December and will be located at Lower Yellowstone Lower Yard. Watch the club’s website and Facebook page for the announcement.

Giving Trees

Looking for another way to give back this season? Boys and Girls Club has Giving Trees up at local banks and credit unions, complete with ornaments representing clubhouse needs. The list will also be posted online.

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