A new generation of leaders
Webster City Youth Advisory Commission brings new voice to community
Six students in Webster City are working to ensure the voices of the community youth are heard.
The City Council of Webster City appointed six students to the newly formed Youth Advisory Commission on March 20, 2017. The council appointed middle school students Sophia Vanderpool, Aiden Feltz, and Anna Atchison along with high school students Matthew Johnston, Brianna Luke, and Katie Greenfield.
The commission convened their first meeting on April 13, 2017 in the council chambers.
As Atchison reached her term limit last fall, she was replaced by new member Annastacia Iverson.
Chairman Matthew Johnson has been leading the commission since the group’s fruition. Johnson, 17, is the son of Brent and Laurie Johnson, of Webster City. Johnson is a senior at Webster City High School. There, he is involved in band, choir, National Honor Society and student council.
“As a commission member, I meet once a month with the other members and our city council representative to brainstorm ideas, develop, and carry out plans,” Johnson said. “I may even attend a city council meeting once or twice to make a proposal for funding or a recent update regarding a project.”
He got involved in the YAC to help represent youth in the community and get others involved in community events.
“As chairperson of the commission, I am in charge of running each monthly meeting with the help of our city council representative, Logan Welch. “I feel that it is important for the youth to have a voice because they are the future leaders of tomorrow.”
Brianna Luke, 17, is a junior at Webster City High School. She is the daughter of Steve and Denita Miller. Along with YAC, Luke is involved in cheerleading and soccer.
“I wanted to make an impact on the community and present my ideas to get the youth and get other community members more involved,” Luke said.
Luke, who is also the YAC secretary, believes every generation should have a say in what goes on in the community.
“Many things change and the youth have so many great ideas to help improve things and come up with new ideas,” said Luke.
A love of politics brought Katie Greenfield to the commission. Greenfield, 17, is the daughter of Troy and Tammy Greenfield of Webster City. She is a senior at Webster City High School. Along with YAC, she is involved in student council, 4-H, National Honor Society and Dance Marathon.
“I got involved with YAC because I enjoy politics and I am a strong believer in students having a voice in their community,” said Greenfield. “I thought that it would be a good opportunity to help bring more entertainment to Webster City for youth.”
Greenfield enjoys the open environment that gives all members a chance to share ideas.
“What I am most excited about when it comes to the YAC is that Logan gives us such an open environment to suggest whatever comes to mind,” Greenfield said. “We are allowed to bring whatever we like to the table, and it’s nice to be in a place where our ideas are actually heard.”
Sophia Vanderpool, 13, is an eighth grader at Webster City Middle School. She is the daughter of Vic and Katie Vanderpool of Webster City. Outside of the YAC, Vanderpool is involved in cross country, track, student council and art club.
Vanderpool joined the YAC to bring a wider variety of activities to all ages in Webster City.
“I wanted to make a difference in our community and give teens an opportunity to have a voice about what happens in the town,” said Vanderpool. “I also want to give teenagers activities to look forward to, and be involved in.”
“The thing that excites me the most about this commission is my opportunity to have a voice on what happens in the community,” said Vanderpool.
Annastacia Iverson, 12, is a seventh grader at Wesbter City Middle School. She is the daughter of Shawna Vestweber and Monte Iverson, of Webster City. Along with the YAC, she is a seventh grade girls basketball manager and plays the piano.
Iverson joined the commission to be able to provide input on what goes on at the city level and ensure youth voices are heard.
“I think it is important because the youth is the next generation of people to live in the town and they should have an input on what happens now to plan for the future,” Iverson said.
Aiden Feltz, 13, is the son of Leah and Jeremiah Feltz, of Woolstock. Feltz is in seventh grade at Webster City Middle School. He is also involved in baseball, track, football, band, project explore, and 4-H.
“I got involved in YAC to make a difference,” said Feltz. “It seemed so cool to me that I could affect my community in 6th grade.”
“My role as a commission member is to better the lives of my fellow youth. That’s the main goal, the reason this commission was created,” Feltz said. “It’s all about the youth.”
Members of the Youth Advisory Commission met in January to discuss plans for a proposed Frisbee golf tournament. After discussion, research and insight from local experts, the commission decided to move forward and make the event a reality.
The first Annual Brewer Creek Open Frisbee golf tournament will be held on Saturday, June 16.
Frisbee golf or what many refer to as “frolf”, is a recreational game that mixes components of both golf and Frisbee. Players throw a disc from a tee to a target. Frolf is most commonly played in nine or 18 holes. There is a nine-hole Frisbee golf course located at Brewer Creek Park, which is where the tournament will take place. The tournament will include both an individual and team tournament.
“We have some fun activities planned for the youth over the summer, more details will be coming soon,” Vanderpool said.
“This will bring our community together,” Luke said, “and if local vendors are willing to be there it will bring more attention and business to their businesses.”
More details will be available to the public as the event nears. To learn more about the event or the YAC, visit their page on Facebook at Webster City YAC.
“I am a fan of Webster City, because it is my hometown after all, and the goal is to make this a town that all youth love growing up in as well,” Greenfield said.
The YAC is facilitated by Councilman Logan Welch.
The next meeting of the Youth Advisory Commission is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m. at the Fuller Hall Recreation Sampson Room.
“I encourage anyone to attend a meeting if they have any proposals, requests, or questions for us,” said Johnson.