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Chinatown YMCA Bridge Walk takes place Saturday Morning

Coming up on Saturday morning, it’s the annual Chinatown YMCA Bridge Walk. Members of the YMCA, as well as community partners and friends will be walking down Bowery and across the Manhattan Bridge, and then back again. They’ll also be hosting a breakfast beforehand and a celebratory lunch after the walk. . The walk helps support the organization’s annual campaign, which makes the Y available to children and families who need its services the most. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets. Read more…

Anti-violence block party held in Coney Island

The Coney Island Anti-Violence Collaborative put on a block party with the Coney Island YMCA to address gun violence in the community today. The move comes after the recent increase of shootings in the neighborhood. Organizers are hoping with the help of community events and workshops, they can get kids off the streets and involved in educational and constructive activities. Read more…

Bon Appetit raises funds for needy families

The Bronx YMCA held its eighth annual Bon Appetit Fundraiser on Wednesday, September 10, featuring tasting and networking opportunities from all over the Bronx. The event, attended by about 200 people, raised more than $12,000 for the Annual Campaign. The Annual Campaign is a YMCA initiative to raise money to help families and individuals participate in the many programs offered at the facility. Read more…

Kids review famous paintings, prove the best art critics are 5 years old

Recently, British artist Jake Champn said in an interview it is not important to expose young children to art. The Huffington Post disagrees. To demonstrate (in a very unscientific way) that exposing children to art is anything but pointless, we turned to the Arts Camp at the West Side Y. The New York-based program is dedicated to exposing young people to a variety of art forms from dance to ceramics to painting. We visited the camp on the last day of its run, to talk to a group of kids ages five to six about famous art. Read more…

Best Summer Internship Ever

This hilarious video underscores the YMCA's role as one of New York City's leading youth employers. The organization currently employs more than 5,000 full- and part-time and seasonal staff members across New York City -- including more than 1,800 youth staff between the ages of 14 and 24 currently working primarily in citywide camps and after school programs. Read more…

High hopes for Queens students

Cindy Pietrakowski and Yulin Yang spent their summers as YMCA interns. Now, these Queens students and three others were selected to be included in a Bank of America program called Student Leaders. The project is geared to 200 or more high school juniors and seniors who are also active in their school community. Each of the student leaders chosen was given an eight-week internship and an invitation to attend a national leadership summit in Washington, DC. Read more…

‘Don’t touch his head:’ A day in the life of Mr. Met

Cross Island YMCA campers got an opportunity to get up close and personal with Mr. Met. While campers were at a baseball clinic with actual Mets players Josh Edgin and Eric Campbell, Mr. Met was the biggest celebrity around. For the next half-hour, he poses for pictures, dishes out "high fours" (Mr. Met only has four fingers on each hand) and gestures his way through questions shouted from every direction – "Are you the real Mr. Met?" and "Are you wearing a costume?" are two of the favorites. But mostly, he attempts to avoid starting a riot. Read more…

Greenpoint Y ushers in a new crop of environmental activists

Over the past five years, the Y has partnered with New York University’s (NYU) Wallerstein Collaborative for Urban Environmental Education, Broadway Stages, and ExxonMobil to offer select high school students a chance to participate in the Summer Youth in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math program (SYSTEM). During the program, students learn the imprtance of environmental studies. Keith Hicks, the Executive Director at the Greenpoint Y said, “Teens continue to explore ways to create a more sustainable environment using Lentol Garden as a workstation. We are proud of what the teens have accomplished and the great impact the program continues to have on the teens and the community.” Read more…