Lincoln-Way West Baseball Team kicks off spring season by volunteering
Thursday, March 29, 2018

With the start of the season and state testing quickly approaching, members of the Lincoln-Way West Baseball Team used what little free time they had available in order to serve their community.

In a two-day span, the Warriors serviced five different organizations including: the New Lenox VFW, the Manhattan Park District, the New Lenox Chamber of Commerce, New Lenox Public Works, and the Will County Sheriff’s Office.

“We started this event five years ago and it has been a positive experience every time,” says Head Coach, Jake Zajc. “Each year we have numerous people thanking us for the help at every site we have worked at. I also feel that it is a great team building experience to get teammates and coaches together in a different environment outside of a practice or game.”

On Friday, March 9, eight baseball players and three coaches volunteered at the New Lenox VFW Fish Fry. The student athletes and coaches bussed tables and seated customers throughout the event. The next day, ten baseball players and one coach volunteered at the Manhattan Park District Easter Egg Hunt, which took place at Round Barn Farm Park. The volunteers assisted in organizing and running the event, hiding eggs and interacting with children.

“I loved the experience, and it seemed liked all of the kids and parents that attended had a good experience,” says sophomore outfielder Johnny Latek. “I liked being there with my teammates and help making it fun for all of the kids that attended the event.”

At the same time as the egg hunt, 28 other players and three coaches assisted the New Lenox Chamber of Commerce for their Commerce Expo, where they provided the heavy lifting for set-up and tear down. They also helped vendors bring their materials to and from their vehicles. Aside from their manual labors, ten more players also helped tidy up for New Lenox Public Works and the Will County Sheriff’s Office on Saturday. The student athletes washed and cleaned vehicles, a warehouse, garage, and office areas.

“We’re proud that our students are so committed to serving their community,” says Lincoln-Way West Principal Monica Schmitt. “Their excellence extends beyond the classroom and their athletics; I’m constantly impressed by our Warriors.”