Crab Feed raises $70K for youth programs

Feb. 7—The Yuba-Sutter community brought out its best Johnny Depp impersonations Saturday night for the "Pirates of the Caribbean"-themed Crab Feed, which kicked off its 30th celebration to raise money for area high schools and programs in Sutter County.

The Crab Feed was a sold-out success yet again, despite the rainy conditions outside, according to Yuba City Rotary President Joe McClure.

McClure, dressed as a pirate from top to bottom, said the feed had approximately 650 people scattered throughout the Main Exhibit Hall of the Yuba-Sutter Fairgrounds, and raised about $70,000.

Most of the proceeds, McClure said, went to help area youth through scholarships and programs to better the schools at Yuba City High School, River Valley High School and Sutter Union High School.

The community itself played a vital role in helping raise money all night, through ticket sales, a silent auction, treasure chest giveaways and other activities.

Bill Highland, who has many roles in the Yuba-Sutter community, including as chairperson for the Yuba City Rotary Speech Contest, said the new surround sound system installed for the annual Crab Feed helped bring a clearer environment to the whole experience of the tradition in Yuba-Sutter.

"It was the difference between an old record player and a modern system. It blew me away," Highland said. "If you can't hear, you don't get involved in the auction and it's bad."

Highland is also a big proponent of Interact Clubs, which he said are essentially junior rotaries at Sutter County and other area high schools.

Kiera Galyean, a Yuba City High School junior, is the vice president of her school's Interact Club. Through Galyean's leadership, the club has had a presence throughout Yuba-Sutter, including at Saturday night's Crab Feed.

Galyean said the club's current project is one that could perhaps have a lasting impact on the area for years to come. Interact at Yuba City is currently petitioning the Yuba City Unified School District Board of Trustees to hire on-campus mental health therapists, Galyean said.

"Counselors aren't real therapists," Galyean said.

Galyean and the club have been working to gather enough signatures to put it on the district board's agenda in time for its March 28 school board meeting, the junior said.

With the help of Yuba City High School's Interact Club, a mental health study was previously done, via a voluntary quiz, and it was reported that 30% of students at Yuba City High School have shown symptoms of clinical depression and anxiety, Galyean said.

"We thought if we can get people on campus for kids to talk to, that can be a potential solution," Galyean said. "We want to show the school board it's not just a small group who wants this. We are not the only ones who feel this way."