Mukilteo Beacon 

Mukilteo YMCA Celebrates 20 Years of Impact


Last updated 2/19/2020 at 11:16am

Last Wednesday at Rosehill Community Center, the Mukilteo YMCA kicked off its 2020 Annual Campaign Fundraising season with a memorable evening of speakers, a silent auction, and long-time memories of building community and friends.

The Y may be known for its fitness classes and swimming pool, but the crowd of 250 soon learned how much more the Y has done in the last 20 years.

The evening was a display of community pride and celebration of the past 20 years and the positive impact that the Y has had on Mukilteo.

Lisette Blanco, a member of the YMCA-led Minority Achievers Program (MAP) at Mariner High School, served as the event’s emcee.

Blanco explained her goal of becoming the first of her family to graduate from high school. She aspires to be a teacher for her future career. She has been part of the Y’s after-school programs for the past six years at Voyager Middle School and Mariner High School.

MAP has given her the opportunity to visit college campuses, listen to inspiring guest speakers, and look forward to graduating high school and college. This will enable Lisette to enter into a career that will allow her to become financially secure and independent. This is impact. This is the Y.

Jeff Dunleavey, the inaugural branch executive, shared the story of the first eight years of the Mukilteo branch. One of his favorite memories was the gathering of local marching bands, schools and community groups that marched from the Harbour Point Fire Station to the YMCA on its opening day. “There wasn’t one car in the parking lot, it was so packed with people,” he said. “A truly unforgettable day.”

To help foster community health, the Y was built with a workout studio, a swimming pool and basketball gym. The Y offered group fitness classes, a place for the community to gather, youth basketball, and swim lessons to promote water safety.

Later, the outdoor skate park was built, and then, in 2008, the building was expanded to include the Youth Development Center, a playground, and a second workout studio, much larger than the first.

In 2010, the Y identified the need to expand its outreach to Casino Road, to enable the children of the Mukilteo School District by providing a safe haven for them to do homework and hang out with friends, and to connect with caring individuals.

The Casino Road Community Center is adjacent to a variety of non-profit organizations that provide services to Casino Road families.

Meg Fuel highlighted the partnership between the Y and Everett Community College, saying, “They provide no-cost English classes to local residents who need them and childcare to support them.” Over 400 adults and 150 preschoolers were served at the Y’s CRCC in 2019.

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In addition to these services, the Y provides free summer swim lessons at apartment complex pools on Casino Road. In 2019, the Y provided swimming lessons to over 50 individuals.

Cynthia Kelly, the new Mukilteo branch executive, emphasized the importance of the Y in our community. She explained her vision for the branch and how excited she is to continue to expand on these programs.

Along with annual campaign chair Stacie Byers, they presented the Bill McCay award to Miriam Vargas, a passionate volunteer who believes in community and is an advocate for the Y and its mission.


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