The Grant County Youth Arts Program, which started in 2014, will undergo a change this year.
The program, founded by Rebecca Bogardus and Janine Goodwin, has provided opportunities for youth ages 4-18 to learn fine art, drama and music through a summer program called “Summer at the YAP.”
Youths and adults also practiced in music groups and presented winter and spring concerts to showcase their talents, and a pilot program offering music lessons for Dayville School students started in the spring of 2018.
Bogardus moved out of state last year, and Goodwin announced at the group’s May 10 “Music of the Western Hemisphere” concert that she has accepted a position as music teacher at Slater Elementary School in Burns and will step down as YAP director.
The Youth Arts Program has received support from the local Juniper Arts Council since 2015 and will now be led by the council.
“Currently, the Juniper Arts Council is working to keep the YAP a vital part of arts education and performance opportunities in Grant County,” council president Kris Beal said. “The JAC has cancelled Summer at the YAP this year. Opportunities for the fall term will be announced as soon as they are available.”
Goodwin described the position at Slater as a “dream job,” and said the staff there have been welcoming.
“The hard part is leaving YAP,” she said. “Some of the students have been with us since the beginning in 2014.”
She said she’ll miss all the youth and adults involved with the program.
“It’s been an honor to be part of their growth as musicians and a joy to watch them learn,” she said, adding several teachers and advisers have been especially helpful.
“I’m especially proud of our string orchestra, the first I know of in Grant County,” she said.
Goodwin said in whatever way YAP continues or transforms, “it will continue to get better.”