Fort McCoy News January 24, 2014

CYSS programs on-going; plan for spring, summer

STORY & PHOTO By Scott T. Sturkol
Public Affairs Staff

Though Fort McCoy is still in the middle of the winter schedule for youth programs, it isn't too early to start thinking about spring and summer participation as well.

Photo for youth programs article
Richa Henderson, a child-youth program assistant at Fort McCoy's School Age and Youth Center, posts artwork done by children who attend the center on a wall inside the facility.

Cori Yahnke, director of the School Age and Youth Center, said the Fort McCoy Child, Youth and School Services (CYSS) calendar is always full of activities for youth Family members who are from kindergarten age all the way through grade 12.

Currently, CYSS has youth bowling taking place. Soon after, in February, the 4-H Tech Wizards science, technology, engineering and math mentorship program will be available to all military children ages 8 to 17 who attend the School Age and Youth Center.

Additionally, the Schools of Knowledge, Inspiration, Exploration and Skills (SKIES) Unlimited effort makes available on-going skiing and snowboarding lessons for youth at Fort McCoy's Whitetail Ridge Ski Area.

"There are a lot of activities going on and more as the year progresses," Yahnke said.

Looking ahead, Yahnke said there will also be a summer camp held again in 2014 for Fort McCoy's youth.

"We've already worked out the planning dates for the summer camp, and parents should be able to start registering their children as soon as April 1," Yahnke said.

"This year's camp is scheduled to take place from June 9 to Aug. 29 — a total of 12 weeks.

"During the summer camp the youth will be here five days a week," she said. "As part of our partnership with other MWR (Morale, Welfare and Recreation) facilities we'll be going to a number of places to include the gym, pool, beach and bowling alley."

According to the summer camp guidelines, the camp is set up by the week, so parents don't have to sign their child up for the entire summer. They can choose the weeks in which they want to participate. Hours for summer camp are from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from Monday through Friday.

Other opportunities come up all the time as well, Yahnke said, and parents are encouraged to register early for any of the programs to ensure they have a reservation as the year progresses.

Yahnke added the School Age and Youth Center has openings for the After-School Program available at any time.

This is a program where the center's staff picks up registered children from schools in Sparta and Tomah and brings them to the center to enjoy activities until 5:30 p.m. each school day.

The After School Program is offered to all school-age children in grades kindergarten through fifth grade.

There is also a free After School Program offered for youth in grades 6-12 grades. The program is Monday through Friday from 3 to 5:30 p.m.

For more information on youth programs at Fort McCoy, call the School Age and Youth Center at 608-388-4373.