My son started sixth grade at MJS a few weeks ago. He loves the new independence and experiences. We are fortunate that our house is walking distance to the school, so he walks both ways, and sometimes meets me at the CAS pickup, or walks around town with friends. Last week, he spent a few afterschool hours at the Madison Area YMCA’s Boszhardt Family Teen Center. His friend, whose parents both work and whose house is a long walk away, often walks from MJS to the Y, and spends a few afterschool hours there, doing homework and playing games until his parents return from work. While a CAS, he was in the aftercare program, but there is no such option at MJS, so kids whose parents are not able to get them when school lets out need to figure out what to do. As one of my friends called it, “instant independence”! Thank goodness for the Y!
I was curious about the Teen Center, and went in the other morning to learn more about what my sixth grader can do there. What I found out amazed me, so I wanted to share!
Because of a YMCA-Madison Borough partnership, Madison teens and pre-teens (grades 6-12) can participate in after-school and Friday evening Teen Scene programs for free or at the member rate. Yup! Madison teens can participate for FREE! Crazy! (Teens from other towns who are not Y members can participate for a small fee.)
There are many programs and initiatives that are going on:
The Boszhardt Family Teen Center is located just inside the main doors of the YMCA. It is a supervised space that is free to Madison residents in grades 6-12. It features free homework help, iMac computers, Wii and Wii U, Cable TV, PS3 projected onto a large screen, X-Box 360, air hockey, and foosball.
The hours during the school year are:
- Monday 3-6pm
- Tuesday 3-7pm
- Wednesday 3-6pm
- Thursday 3-6pm
- Friday 3-6pm
The Teen Center follows the Madison Public School calendar. It will open at noon for extended hours on scheduled holidays and early dismissals.
Here are some upcoming events at the Teen Center. Times are during Teen Center hours, unless otherwise noted:
- Thurs, Sept 28 Teen Gym: Dodgeball (5-6pm)
- Fri, Sept 29 Be U: Coloring Books and Cider
- Tues, Oct 10 Be U: Hispanic Heritage Fiesta (5-7pm)
- Wed, Oct 11 Teen Gym: 3v3 Basketball (6:30-7:30pm)
- Thurs, Oct 12 Teen Gym: Dodgeball (5-6pm)
- Wed, Oct 18 TC Pop Up: Movie and Popcorn Night (5-7pm)
- Thurs Oct 19 Teen Gym: Dodgeball (5-6pm)
- Wed Oct 25 TC Pop Up: “Say no to drugs, say yes to pizza”
- Thurs Oct 26 Teen Gym: Dodgeball (5-6pm)
The Teen Scene is Madison Area YMCA’s Friday Night program for 6th-8th graders. There is open gym time, full use of the Teen Center, organized games (dodgeball, gladiator, etc.), and open swim (9-10pm). It is free for Madison Area YMCA members and residents of Madison, or $5 per night for non-members or non-residents. Limited to the first 50 participants. Parents must fill out a one-time waiver.
Teen Scene hours are Fridays 7-10pm; teens must check in by 8pm. The first Teen Scene of the school year is October 6, 2017. No Teen Scene Oct 20 or Oct 27.
For more information on The Madison Area YMCA’s Teen Center and Teen Scene, visit www.madisonareaymca.org/programs-and-schedules/teens or call the YMCA at (973) 822-YMCA. Also check out the Facebook page “Madison Area YMCA Teens” or Instagram @MadisonAreaYMCATeens