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‘Chip In’ For Island Youth

A benefit for the Pa‘ia Youth & Cultural Center.

April 26, 2012
Sarah Ruppenthal · Contributing Writer , The Maui Weekly

Just a stone's throw away from idyllic Pa'ia Bay, the Pa'ia Youth & Cultural Center (PYCC) is reminiscent of the enchanting world of "Neverland" depicted in J.M. Barrie's "Peter Pan"--a whimsical, magical place where kids are encouraged--and expected--to be kids.

Home to radiOpio (KOPO-LP89.5FM), Stonewave Sk8Park, Hekili Multimedia Lab and the Pa'ia Bay Caf, the youth center (which is supervised by a dedicated staff of "grown-ups) practically bursts at the seams with a fusion of sounds, sights and smells.

Sure, it sounds like all fun and games, but the PYCC is also a learning facility, offering an exhaustive menu of social, educational, cultural, vocational and recreational activities designed to enhance personal development. In addition, the center aims to foster a lifelong enthusiasm for learning and commitment to friends, family and community.

Article Photos

Sarah Ruppenthal

The center, operated by the Pa'ia Youth Council, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit funded by county and state grants from the County of Maui Department of Housing & Human Concerns, the State of Hawai'i Office of Youth Services, private foundations, community donations and fundraising events. The PYCC's mission is to "build community through youth" by providing a variety of social, educational, cultural, vocational and recreational activities in a safe and fun environment to the youth of Pa'ia and surrounding communities."

You can help the PYCC keep this mission alive at the "Casino de Mayo" fundraiser on Saturday, May 5, from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Maui Country Club in Spreckelsville.

Guests at this year's event will enjoy a lavish evening of no-stakes casino games, fine foods and spirits, stylish entertainment, a live auction and prize giveaways. It is certain to be an event fit for a king and queen and--quite possibly--a joker or two.

"Casino de Mayo is an important fundraiser that helps underwrite staffing and programming at the youth center," said PYCC Board Member Pete Jalbert. "We look forward to seeing familiar faces from last year's event, and a whole lot of new faces who heard about this great night via friends."

Tickets are still available for $150 per person (before May 1; $175 if purchased after May 1 or at the door), which includes 'ono food, drink vouchers, gaming tokens, gifts, prizes and--most importantly--the satisfaction of stacking the deck in favor of our local youth. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit Wings Hawai'i in Pa'ia (71 Baldwin Ave.) or the Antique Boutique (3619 Baldwin Ave.). Tickets can also be purchased online at

For more information about PYCC, visit



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