Ages: 4 – 12 years old

Y Guides champions the father/child relationship and encourages this valuable interaction through dad run meetings and weekend events! We are looking for interested pairs to join existing tribes or create their own!

Location: All Gaston County Family YMCAs

Application: Download application   here

First Year Costs – $55 for Members, $75 for Non Members
2nd Year and on – $45 for Members, $65 for Non Members
Additional Child – $35 each Members, $45 Non Members
Individual events may have additional fee at time of sign up.

Contact: Your local YMCA or Ben Oeser, or at (704) 824-1131, with questions about the program.


Each Tribe holds 8 to 10 pairs that meet each month at members homes on a rotating basis.  The individual tribe sets the tribal schedule, with a general rule of 4 hours a month.  The YMCA offers Nation Events each month for everyone to participate in!

Tribe Selection

Participants are given the option of creating their own tribe or joining an existing group.  We try to place pairs in relation to where they live or the school they attend.  However, if you already know someone participating you are welcome to request a tribe on the back of this form.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Y-Guides?

Y-Guides is a father/child program that provides opportunities for fathers and children to spend quality time together.  It is a perfect way to foster a strong and lasting relationship.

Who is it for?

Y-Guides and Princesses is a father/child program for ages five through twelve comprised of pairs from the Gaston County area.

What happens when I join?

New members will be placed on a tribe of eight to ten pairs who live near each other.  Father/son pairs join Y-Guides Braves while father/daughter pairs will be known as Y-Guides Princesses.

Can I join a friend’s tribe?

Yes, as long as your children are a similar age and there is room for another pair!

How much time does it take?

Typically, the time commitment is two to four hours a month participating in meetings and events.  Tribes meet once or twice a month in members homes on a rotating basis and are invited to participate in any Nation Events (open to all Y-Guides).  You are also encouraged to plan special Tribal events amongst your Tribe!

When do tribes meet?

Tribe meeting times and locations are decided by individual tribes as to fit the fathers’ schedules.

What types of activities are involved?

Tribe meetings include games, songs, crafts, and refreshments.  They are a great way to become connected with your child as well as new tribe members.  Tribes will also plan Tribal events such as hikes, cookouts, fundraisers, etc!

Nation Events are times when all of our tribes get together!  We will host activities pointed towards father/son – Pinewood Derby, or father/daughter – Tea Party as well as activities for all – Spring Longhouse (campout).

What does that fee cover?

The annual registration covers all patches, beads, feathers, and annual awards.     Additional registration fee will be needed for specific activities.

How do I join?

Stop by your nearest Gaston County Family YMCA location to fill out a registration form or download a copy at gaston.starklmc.com.  If you have any questions please contact  Ben Oeser, or at (704) 824-1131.

Once I join am I automatically registered for all events?

No, each event required a separate registration.