New renovations to help better serve youth

A project years in the making is finally complete. Thanks to grant funds from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, as well as collaboration with the Silver Springs Youth Organization and Lyon County School District, Boys & Girls Clubs of Mason Valley’s Silver Springs Site has been completely renovated to better serve the youth of that community. New décor, technology, bigger spaces and an outdoor fitness course and turf field are all now a part of the clubhouse. The Silver Springs Site is located on the grounds of Silver Stage Elementary, and was first housed in a small portable building.

“The Club was in need of some repair,” said Dan McLaughlin, area director for the Club.

Several years later, LCSD and the school opened up an entire building on the west side of campus. The site is now held in the four rooms of this building, which don’t resemble classrooms anymore.

“There’s not a lot of Boys & Girls Club school sites that look like what we have going on here,” said Travis Crowder, CPO for BGCMV.

The project was initiated by Silver Springs Youth Organization, a group that was put together with the goal of giving kids and teens in the area something to do after school. One of the original members of the group, Margaret Ruckman, passed away before the project could be completed. Her legacy will live on with a dedication plaque in the site.

“Margaret was a force of nature,” said Peggy Edwards, a member of the Youth Organization. “Without her dedication to this project, we wouldn’t be here today celebrating its completion.”

The partnership with Lyon County School District and Boys & Girls Clubs of Mason Valley has been present for five years. When the county began running low on funds during the recession, they halted their after-school youth programs. LCSD and BGCMV worked together to provide programs and space for youth.

“We do a lot to enrich our kids,” said Jim Gianotti, principal at SSES. “One of our best enrichments we have here is the Boys & Girls Club.”