YMCA youth director likes pace of new position

September 16, 2004|by BONNIE H. BRECHBILL

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Lindsey Secrest doesn't like to be bored.

When she arrives at work, "there are so many things to do, I wonder what I'm going to get to do first. I like that," she said recently, taking a break outside the Waynesboro Area YMCA as the after-school crowd arrived.

"I like to be here when the teens get out of school and come to the teen center to hang out and use the equipment," she said.

Secrest, 23, the director of youth and teen programs at the YMCA, has been on the job less than two months.


The YMCA offers basketball and volleyball leagues, indoor and outdoor soccer, flag football and a teen center. Secrest finds volunteers to help with the teams, runs the summer day camp and summer playground programs and oversees the intramural and volunteer leagues in the Greencastle school system. She also referees in the indoor soccer league.

"I'm learning so much," she said, and admitted to being "slightly overwhelmed."

Several hundred kids throughout the year participate in activities at the YMCA, according to Alan Smith, associate executive director.

Smith said he expects 170 to 200 kids for youth basketball. He said the YMCA is in the process of addressing youth and teen obesity, and that Secrest will be one of the leaders responsible for implementing that program.

The Hagerstown resident worked at the Washington County Recreation Department for five years, helping with the summer camps and teaching water aerobics. While she has experienced many of the activities she's responsible for at the YMCA in other programs, "this is about me doing it," she said.

The teen night she planned for last Saturday was a success, she said.

Attended by 36 youngsters in grades six through nine, it featured an inflatable obstacle course outside, and foosball, air hockey, table tennis, free food and a disc jockey in the YMCA's teen center.

Smith said teen nights are held once a month in collaboration with Young Life, which provides a spiritual format. "It's not just recreation; we reach the spirit, mind and body," he said.

A recent graduate of Frostburg State University with a degree in parks and recreation management, Secrest was chosen for the job from a field of 65 applicants, which she said made her feel "really good."

Secrest said she wasn't into sports until she attended middle school and started playing softball, which she continued in high school and college. She said she was a catcher for the Frostburg team.

Her new job at the YMCA is going well, she said. "This crew is so much fun to work with, and it's great to work with youth and sports."

"She's done a wonderful job, for us," Smith said. "She's warm, caring, conscientious, she has a loving spirit and she's well-organized."

Secrest is planning the first Funky Memorial Golf Classic for Youth, to be held Oct. 2 at South Mountain Golf Course. The event was suggested by Suzanne Funk of Waynesboro as a memorial to her late husband, Donald L. "Funky" Funk, an avid local golfer.

The event is free, and T-shirts will be given to all participants. Trophies will be awarded for first through third places.

Parents may obtain more information and register their children for the Funky Memorial Golf Classic by calling Secrest at the YMCA at 717-762-6012.

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