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SAVE THE DATE!

Stairs of Stillwater 5K Walk

Saturday, October 12, 2019
9:30 a.m. start
Lowell Park, downtown Stillwater

Registration will open in late May 2019 for this fun, family-friendly 5K Stairs of Stillwater event. It is the 6th annual fundraiser walk that benefits Youth Advantage. We are proud to partner with HarvestFest as its official 5K event.  Discover the hidden staircases that lead to downtown Stillwater from the hills that surround it. Enjoy beautiful views of the St. Croix River Valley from various angles as you conquer the staircases. Finish the walk in the heart of the HarvestFest activities including a giant pumpkin contest, pumpkin regatta race on the St. Croix River, pumpkin drop, and so much more!


Our Mission

Youth Advantage aims to provide access to arts, athletics, and educational-enrichment experiences for children of financially-challenged parents or guardians who reside in District #834 boundaries.

Youth Advantage recognizes that giving children these opportunities puts young people on a path to success.


Youth Advantage helps young peopleā€¦

  • Participate in athletics
  • Pursue their passion in music, fine arts, or theater
  • Join a science or computer program
  • And more!

Youth Advantage is a nonprofit organization that provides eligible young people access to activities offered in our community through financial need-based scholarships and loan of new or gently used athletic equipment, musical instruments, or other necessary items.

Families who live in Independent School District 834’s boundaries and 1) whose children qualify for free or reduced-fee lunch programs, or 2) who have experienced a recent financial hardship, likely qualify for a Youth Advantage Scholarship. Serving students in grades K-12.

Assistance is available to qualifying youth for:

  • 4-H “Whether youth are building rockets, raising dairy cows, or writing musical plays, 4-H gives them the skills they need to succeed in life.”  http://www1.extension.umn.edu/youth/mn4-h/about4-H.html
  • Afton Alps/SOS Outreach (ski or snowboarding) Call Y.A. at 651-342-1266 for details.
  • Applewood Junior Golf League www.applewoodhillsgolf.com
  • Ashland Productions  (new as of 2019) http://ashlandproductions.org
  • Belle Ballet www.belleballet.com
  • Boy Scouts of America
  • Curio Dance and School www.curiodance.com
  • Dayspring Suzuki Studio (string instrument lessons- limited number of scholarships available)
  • District #834 Community Education classes www.stillwaterschools.org/ce
  • Extracurricular fee-based classes, camps, clubs and activities that emphasize arts, educational enrichment, or athletics.
  • Girl Scouts of the USA
  • Hidden Pines Ranch Summer Day Camp www.hiddenpinesranch.com
  • MN 7 on 7 Passing League (touch football)  http://www.my7on7.com/stillwater
  • Oak Glen Junior Golf League www.oakglengolf.com
  • Off the Wall Studio www.offthewallstudio.org
  • St. Croix Rec Center’s Learn-to-Skate & Hockey Start-up classes www.stcroixreccenter.com
  • St. Croix Sailing School (new as of 2019)  www.saintcroixsailingschool.org
  • St. Croix Valley Athletic Association programs www.scvaa.org
  • St. Mary’s Point Hockey Program www.smphockey.org
  • School sports teams and music programs
  • Stillwater Area Baseball Association stillwaterbaseball.org
  • Stillwater Area Fastpitch Association stillwaterfastpitch.org
  • SAHS Pony Activity Center- student memberships https://stillwaterschools.org/community-education/pony-activity-center
  • Stillwater Area Lacrosse Association www.stillwaterlacrosse.org
  • Stillwater Boys' Traveling Basketball stillwaterbasketball.com
  • Stillwater Elks' Summer Overnight Camp Call Y.A. at 651-342-1266 for details.
  • Stillwater Girls' Traveling Basketball http://www.ponygb.com/
  • Stillwater Swim Club   Call Y.A. at 651-342-1266 for details.
  • StoryArk  storyark.org
  • Warner Nature Center www.smm.org/warnernaturecenter

Contact Youth Advantage to learn more.



YOUTH ADVANTAGE RECEIVES LOCAL PRESS COVERAGE

Stillwater Gazette recently had a series on female nonprofit leaders in the St. Croix Valley and Youth Advantage's Executive Director, Suzanne Block, was interviewed as a part of this series. 

Due to Stillwater Gazette's membership requirement on its website, we are including a .pdf version of the article below for your convenience, should you decide to read it. The Stillwater Gazette is a high quality local paper that will keep you connected to the happenings in our community so we encourage you to subscribe!

Testimonial on How Participation in the Arts Can Change Lives

On January 29, 2018, the SEC Music Festival was held at Stillwater Area High School. The guest conductor for the  All-Conference Choir was Tesfa Wondemagegnehu. Here is a two minute clip that Mr. Wondemagegnehu approved for Youth Advantage to use which shares his personal story on the value of the arts. This video emphasizes the need for Youth Advantage in our community and throughout the United States.



Fox Sports North's Story About Youth Advantage

As part of its Hockey Day Minnesota line up of hockey games from morning until night on Saturday, January 21, 2017, Fox Sports North produced several stories related to hockey from all over the state of Minnesota. Youth Advantage was selected to be one of those stories. Youth Advantage is grateful to Fox Sports North for doing such a fantastic job capturing what our mission is through this story.


Youth Advantage is a United Way- Washington County East-supported organization.

 

Youth Advantage held a community open house after its Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting ceremony on September 26, 2017 at its new office which is located at 904 4th St. S. in Stillwater. There was live music, games, light snack and beverages. Youth Advantage's staff and current, past, and honorary members of its Board of Directors were on-hand to greet community members.

After seven years at our original location, Youth Advantage simply outgrew its space! Our new location is modest, but solves all of the previous space issues and has room for future programming. Thanks to everyone who helped make this happen, either by volunteering your time during the move, participating in the Stairs of Stillwater or Mardi Gras fundraisers, the annual campaign donation, or however you lend us your support—thank you, thank you, thank you!!! 


A Testimonial To Make Your Heart Sing...

During a time of need Youth Advantage has been a wonderful gift to our family. Our son, Christian, wanted to participate in a youth choir event with the district, but due to a recent job loss, 2 children, and a new baby, there was not enough money for extra activities. After contacting Youth Advantage, he was able to receive a scholarship to participate. The people were extremely helpful at Youth Advantage and we were able to now afford the cost. Christian gained confidence in performing in front a group and increased his enjoyment of singing. Christian enjoyed the choir so much that he hopes to be in it again next year. What a wonderful experience for an 11 year old, all thanks to Youth Advantage. The exciting news was also to know he can enroll in other classes and sports events during this year and qualify for additional scholarships. What a wonderful program, someday we hope to give back to Youth Advantage, but for now, we are grateful.