Five outstanding Club members will compete for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties Youth of the Year title at our annual Steak & Burger event on Friday, February 3. Presented by the Floyd C. Johnson and Flo Singer-Johnson Foundation, Inc., Steak & Burger is a western-themed celebration of youth where Club members and guests will gather at 6 p.m. to cheer on the five candidates at the Lee Wetherington Boys & Girls Club, located at 3100 Fruitville Road. Guests will also hear from our Alumna of the Year, Rikiya Thomas. Additional sponsorship support from the Sarasota Kiwanis Foundation, Wells Fargo, Doris M. Carter Family Foundation and Irv and Marilyn Naiditch will ensure our Clubs continue to provide the best services possible for local youth to achieve their full potential.
Since 1947, Youth of the Year has been the premier recognition program of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America that celebrates the extraordinary achievements of Club members across the nation. Candidates compete at the local Club, state and regional levels before attending the national celebration. Club members who compete for the Youth of Year title embody the values of leadership service, academic excellence and healthy lifestyles. Candidates also have the opportunity to win academic scholarships, speak at national conferences and meet the President of the United States.
This year's Youth of the Year finalists for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties include:
- Al-Muta Hawks, a 17-year-old senior at Sarasota Military Academy who attends the Lee Wetherington Boys & Girls Club and wants to inspire, motivate and provide a voice for all children living in poverty;
- Kayla McGann, a 17-year-old junior at Booker High School who is representing the Roy McBean Boys & Girls Club and wants youth to know that their character is far more important than their reputation;
- Shaterria Smith, a 14-year-old freshman at Sarasota Military Academy from the Newtown Estates Park Boys & Girls Club who hopes her peers realize that they can achieve anything they set their mind to;
- Samantha Stewart, a 15-year-old freshman at North Port High School who attends the Gene Matthews Boys & Girls Club and wants youth who have lost a family member during war to know that the Boys & Girls Club is a great place to seek support; and
- Rickey Tedesco, a 17-year-old junior at Venice Senior High School from the Robert and Joan Lee Boys & Girls Club who hopes to inspire America’s youth through his music to do great things and make positive change in their communities.
Thanks to LongHorn Steakhouse, adult guests will be served burgers while Club members in attendance will eat steak. Guests are encouraged to dress in casual western attire. Proceeds from the event will benefit more than 5,000 Club members, giving them more opportunities to enhance their academic success while living a healthy lifestyle and developing their character and leadership skills.
Individual tickets are available for $125, as well as, $1,000 tables for eight adult guests to dine with two Club members. Click here to purchase your tickets today!