On May 10, 2023, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Minnesota hosted the 2023 Spring Showcase at the Paramount Center for the Arts. The show’s theme, “Unstoppable!” highlighted the Boys & Girls Club’s unstoppable mission to do whatever it takes to empower all youth to reach their full potential.
The event began at 5 p.m. with a reception for the Youth Arts Initiative’s exhibit, “Inspired By Our Surroundings.” The exhibit featured more than 300 pieces of art across multiple mediums, including acrylic paint, watercolor, multicolored drawings, digital art, photography, stop motion video, sculpture and more. The digital arts program shared digitally produced music using QR codes so attendees could listen to their creations. The reception also included LEGO First robotics demonstrations by Oak Hill KIDSTOP and virtual reality career development demonstrations.
About 70 Boys & Girls Club youth artists participated in a collaborative piece called “We Are Boys & Girls Club.” Each youth painted something that expressed their personality or identity on a 6×6-inch canvas board. The artists mentors bonded the boards together and painted a the Boys & Girls Club clasped hands logo over the collaboration to show that the Boys & Girls Club is made special by the creative expression of many unique individuals.
At 6:30 p.m., Boys & Girls Club’s showcase opened with dancers performing to “Unstoppable.” Youth co-emcees Madani and Abby walked the audience through the event, which included numerous upbeat dance genres like tap, lyrical, hip hop and contemporary. Most of these dances were choreographed by the youth themselves, with direction from the dance mentor. One of the dances even incorporated re-purposed vinyl billboard banners painted by youth artists.Boys & Girls Club’s newest Partners for the Future, Libbie Brunsvold, the Macy Grace McDowall Fund and Mary & Keith Swingle, were recognized with a framed Boys & Girls Club logo paper casting. The City of St. Cloud was recognized with the 2023 Champion of Youth Award, and Bob & Anne Mahowald received the Lifetime Commitment to Caring Award.
“We are so proud of the creative expression that our youth were able to share through this showcase and reception,” said Aimee Minnerath, Senior Director of Communications. “Boys & Girls Club’s Youth Arts Initiative gives youth the opportunity to share their voice in the community through culminating events like these. Thanks to the many parents, family members and the community for joining us tonight to listen to the voices of our youth.”
“Programs like these would not be possible without the generous support of our community,” said Deb Nebosis, Vice President of Development. “We’d like to especially thank our Trustees, our Partners for the Future, and our supporters of Youth Arts Initiative and CareerSTART.”
Click here to watch the recorded live stream of the event, and scroll to the 30-minute marker, as the live stream was started early.
Find a copy of the program which lists all the dancers and the run of the show here.
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“This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Central MN Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.”