Parents Line Up Overnight to Snag Spot in After-School Program

"Make sure you hug your parents, you give them a high five," the program leader said. "Because they're here for you."

Equipped with blankets and folding chairs, nearly 100 parents lined up overnight in Rosemead weren't waiting for a concert, or a big sale -- they were camping out hoping to sign their kids up for a popular after-school program with limited spots.

The first parent in line at Emerson Elementary arrived on Sunday afternoon, hours before registration forms for the 2016-17 Woodcraft Rangers program would be accepted on Monday morning.

Parents said it was a sacrifice, but one they gladly made for their children to have a shot at the program that features robotics, sports, dancing, and art and cultural education.

The program has 10 locations in the Garvey School District, and space at each site only for the first 90 people who sign up, said Woodcraft Rangers Afterschool Program manager Danny Salas.

Woodcraft Rangers operates after-school programs at more than 60 places in Los Angeles County, according to its website.

Those who miss the 90-person cutoff may still be able to get in via the wait list, Salas said. The company is looking to increase its state funding so it can make room for more students.

"I told their students: Make sure you hug your parents, you give them a high five," Salas said. "Because they're here for you."

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