PITTSBURG, Kan. — With everything going on this year, kids’ fall sports programs have been hit or miss. Some have found ways to do them safely, while others have decided to cancel their programs all together. However, one Pittsburg group has not canceled their fall and winter sports programs: the YMCA.

Starting in late October and early November, the YMCA will kick off its fall/winter sports programs with volleyball and basketball.

The programs cater to a wide variety of age groups with basketball available to boys and girls three years old to sixth grade, and volleyball, which is run like a club sport, available to girl ages 10 to 18.

“Our volleyball program is actually a competitive team,” Sports Director Chris Bearden said. “They actually come and do tryouts and everything.”

Bearden and Executive Director Mike Moore are very excited about the upcoming season and have even partnered up with the Pittsburg State Gorillas Volleyball team to hold a youth volleyball clinic at the end of the month. Bearden said that they want to hold clinics like this to bridge gaps and fill voids in the community.

“There is a lack of volleyball clinics for the lower grade levels,” Bearden said. “They are going to send over their staff and their players and do little clinic sessions.”

The clinic is open to those in third through sixth grade and will be held Oct. 26 and 28, Nov. 2, 4, 9 and 11, from 6 to 7 p.m. Bearden said partnerships like this, and youth sports programs in general, are incredibly important, especially now.

“It gives them an outreach,” Bearden said. “This gives them an opportunity to interact a little bit more so with other individuals. They get the athleticism, not just through youth sports on my side, even through dance and through gymnastics and volleyball whatever the case may be, it gives them a chance to come together and to socialize.”

But Bearden said they very aware of how this year will be different and the Y has already taken all the necessary precautions to make sure that the kids on the teams are being safe and remaining healthy.

“We give supplies to our coaches and ask them to disinfect their kids as much as possible in between things,” he said. “I know we are going to be paying extra attention to cleaning and everything through all these programs.”

Currently, YMCA is running its fall soccer and flag football leagues as well as its year-round dance and gymnastics programs in addition to all their normal workout classes and programs. More information and how to sign up can be found on their website.

“We’re busy,” Moore said with a laugh.