Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. All across Highlands County today, people are preparing to enjoy a day of togetherness. Some are making grocery lists and shopping. Some are decorating and cleaning (company’s coming!). Others are getting an early start on all the cooking (wish list: double oven).

Me? Today is Pie Day. Every year, cans of pumpkin, bags of pecans, sacks of apples (granny smith), flour, shortening (butter flavored Crisco is my secret to a great crust), and spices take over my kitchen counters. While my hands dedicate themselves to making these round creations, my mind is wandering over the past year’s events. Thinking about time I recently spent working with my fellow Boys & Girls Club’s board members on our Christmas parade float, moments relating to our community members what the Boys & Girls Clubs provide to our youth and their families, and remembering the joy I received while at the Clubs interacting with the children.

Yes, Pie Day is a full day in every sense of the word.

My heart is full of gratitude. I am grateful that I have the honor of working with so many people who are deeply committed to bettering the present lives, and the future lives, of the youth of Highlands County. I am not speaking of just my fellow board members. I am speaking of all the community members who believe in the mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Highlands County, which is to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. I am speaking of all the community members who give of their time by volunteering their talent by fixing a difficult door or more and their treasure by providing the means by which we are able to provide the programming and environment that put the children in our care on a path to success. I am speaking of the city officials in Avon Park and Sebring, who have placed their trust in the Boys & Girls Clubs of Highlands County, providing us with the necessary facilities and funds to offer life changing services to youth ages 6 to 17.

Saying a simple “thank you” just doesn’t express the deep gratitude the Boys & Girls Clubs board and staff have for each of you for partnering with us. Because of what our community has provided, children who attend the Club have a 93% high school graduation rate, giving them a world of opportunity for a better future.

The Boys & Girls Clubs have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. Thank you Highlands County for everything you have done to help us serve the children and families of our community. We are grateful.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Highlands County is a 501 ©(3) non-profit organization. Our Mission is to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. We offer Afterschool Programs, which provide mentoring, tutoring and enrichment opportunities for children in elementary, middle, and high school, as well as Summer Programs filled opportunities to have fun while learning. The Club has locations in Avon Park and Sebring. For more information about our programs, or how you may volunteer or donate, please visit our website at www.highlandsbgc.org, or contact us by calling 863-451-5401.