Artesia Youth Park Yard Sale Raises Thousands For Non-Profit Helping At-Risk Kids

"It means the world knowing that people are paying attention.”

A giant tent filled with items for sale sits just west of Houghton Lake, with every cent raised supporting the effort to help local kids.

The Artesia Youth Park gives at-risk kids a free place to go in Houghton Lake.

This week into next, the community organized a huge yard sale to raise money for the park.

9&10’s Cody Boyer and photojournalist Jeff Blakeman show us how it will help kids.

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“It’s come a long ways,” says Joel Nutt, Artesia Youth Park Vice-President. “It’s kind of special that they are interested."

It’s a big tent for a non-profit with a big heart…

“The sale is super important because it raises a huge amount of the budget money and support that comes towards running the park,” says Andrew Thompson, youth pastor at the Houghton Lake Wesleyan Church.

100-percent of what you see is donated, from the tent to the stuff inside it.

Each sale funds the Artesia Youth Park.

“I run part of my youth ministry out of the park there because it’s so good at facilitating,” Thompson says. “It helps with paying bills, it helps with advancing the grounds and it helps just make sure that we can continue with that mission that Artesia has to make this safe and welcoming environment in Houghton Lake for young people to go to."

All of these items are actually donated directly from the community.

In just a matter of days, they’ve already raised over $2,500.

“You have to have heat in the winter,” Nutt says. “They have to have electricity. That helps pay for it."

You name it — they have it.

The park says it’s the first of two sales this year.

“We used to have to have $10,000 for the year to take and keep it open,” Nutt says. “Since we’ve added the sales, I think we have about $6,000 to go to pay our mortgage off."

From the skate park to their basketball court…

Every cent goes to the park and to the kids.

“The park, itself, exists to provide a very safe, welcoming environment in a community that doesn’t have a lot of places for young people to go,” Thompson says.

“What I see is they have an interest in the kids,” Nutt says. “It keeps the kids busy."

The sale will go until Wednesday, June 21st.

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