Help Rural Youth Enrichment Services make life inspiring for Touchet Valley youth.


Rural Youth Enrichment Services is a non-profit organization established in 2010 to provide the youth of the Touchet Valley with opportunities to experience the arts, develop skills, and participate in enriching activities. From music and art classes, performance opportunities, to giant pumpkin farming and fundraising to ensure the kids have a pool to splash around in, RYES is here to ensure kids have inspiring opportunities to learn and have fun.

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Touchet Valley Acoustic Music Project

ProJECT Leader: Kate Hockersmith

The Touchet Valley Acoustic Music Project offers kids the chance to immerse themselves in a little bit of history and a whole lot of fun learning how to play traditional bluegrass. Using acoustic instruments kids participate in music lessons, play together in bluegrass jams, have opportunities to perform at community events, and travel to Bluegrass music festivals.  Weekly bluegrass jams give kids and adults a chance to play, and learn more about traditional music, together.

Contact Kate for more information:       

Friends of the Pool

Project Leader: Trevor Johnson

Friends of the Pool is a group of community members who banded together in 2015 to ensure that the community pool received the necessary funding for repairs and remain open during the summer when city funds ran short. Through some creative (and delicious!) fundraising, the immediate need was met, and Friends of the Pool continues to work to support pool improvements, enrichment activities, help with lifeguard certification fees, summer pass scholarships and more. 

Mat Birds


Wrestling is physically and mentally challenging, helping our young participants develop integral skills to assist them with the demands of the sport, as well as life-long lessons. 

Contact Kristy for more information:

Waitsburg Urban Forestry


Trees, like people, have a natural lifespan. Through mentorship, tree planting activities, and  education about the importance and care of trees, Waitsburg youth will ensure that Waitsburg continues to enjoy the beauty and environmental benefits of lush established trees.

Contact Allison for more information:     

Giant Pumpkin Project

PRoJect Leader: Gayle Broome

The Giant Pumpkin Project is a program where kids get their hands in the dirt and learn about gardening with one of the most dramatic gardening projects possible-- the giant pumpkin. From a tiny seed to exhibiting at the fair, the kids have a chance to learn every aspect of farming giant pumpkins.