Christmas at the club

Community shares season’s greetings with Sequim Boys & Girl Club members

From the children prepping goodies in the kitchen to the long, weaving line around the game room waiting for Santa, everyone was in the spirit of the holiday season at the Sequim Boys & Girls Club on Dec. 18.

Club staff prepared plenty of surprises for the festivities, too, after school including a new popcorn machine. But behind closed doors was another special effort.

For the third year, the club’s membership services coordinator Tessa Johnson organized the club’s Christmas giving program. Since November, she’s coordinated with businesses and organizations to support some children in need.

That day, tables in the art room were covered with Legos, pajamas, gift cards and plenty more goodies.

Johnson said each year they ask parents/guardians of children on free or reduced lunch or in special circumstances if they’d like assistance with Christmas presents. If so, they’ll fill out forms and Johnson does her best to recruit donations.

“It means every child has a chance to have something for Christmas who might not necessarily get something,” Johnson said.

Several local individuals/families, businesses and organizations like the 7 Cedars Casino, Sound Community Bank, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Rainshadow Laundry & Car Wash, Sequim Chiropractic and Wellness, Lavish Day Spa, Drennan & Ford Funeral Home and Crematory set up giving trees, provided items or gave monetary donations, she said.

This year, 64 children, ages 2-18, including siblings, received presents on Dec. 19.

Toys for Tots and community donors also helped provide a toy for each club member the day before. The club’s computer room was filled with toys that children could explore including cars, games and more. As a special treat, Santa Claus, played by George Stuber, visited the club the same night for photos and handed out candy bags.

Unit director Dave Miller coordinated with Santa again to make an annual purchase for the club to bring in a popcorn maker.

Shaun Carr, a club youth development professional, said every week they open the Kids Cafe where club members can purchase items but for the Christmas party they offered free popcorn and Italian sodas for everyone to celebrate.

For more information on the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula, 400 W. Fir St., which includes the Sequim and Port Angeles’ clubs, call 683-8095 or visit