The Boys and Girls Club of the Alma Area 2018 Great Futures Youth of the Year will be recognized on Thursday at the club’s annual dinner.

Dinner and event activities begin at 6 p.m. at the Boys and Girls Club of the Alma Area at 410 E. Main St. in Alma.

Seats at the event are still available, and there is no cost to attend. A support opportunity will be offered during the dinner, and table and event sponsorships range from $300 to $3,000.

All proceeds benefit the Alma club and its summer program, which is the busiest and most costly semester for the club, said Boys and Girls Club of the Alma Area Chief Executive Officer Elaina Damante.

Alma’s club plays an important part in the community by providing a safe and fun environment for children to eat and spend their time after school and during the summer months, Damante said.

Average daily member attendance is 182 and the club serves more than 1,685 meals each month, Damante said.

During Thursday’s event, guests will hear from the Boys and Girls Club of the Alma Area youth of the year Ezekiel “Zeik” Gregory on personal challenges he has faced and his experiences at the club.

Gregory was named the club’s youth of the year in February by the Boys and Girls Club of the Alma Area board of directors. He is the son of Cheryl and Lee Gregory of Mountainburg.

A senior at Alma High School, Gregory was chosen as an outstanding musician in the school band from 2015-2018. He has received music-based scholarships for college at the University of Central Arkansas, where he plans to major in music.

Gregory also is a member of DECA and has placed third in state competitions, and has volunteered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Socktober, which donates socks to the homeless, Arkansas Children’s Hospital and the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Guests at the Great Futures dinner also will hear brief speeches from the other four youth of the year candidates Chandler Champion, Brandi Shearburn, Grace Murphy and Madison Holloway.

State Rep. Charlotte Douglas and State Sen. Bryan King will give a legislative citation during the event, and there will be a brief video message from Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin.

Dinner will be catered by Stirred Catering and Coffee, and premier sponsors for the event are the Greene Family and Foster Roofing. To sponsor the event or RSVP, email taniah@almabgc.