Hamilton High School fall sport athletes participated in their annual Sports Community Day on Friday by cleaning and painting around Hamilton.
Organized by HHS staff member Chad DeLong, the two-hour community service event was a success.
The Bronc football team was pulling weeds, picking up trash, sweeping sidewalks and wiping down trash cans, flower pots and light poles downtown.
Senior Orion Kutney said Bronc pride includes giving back to their community of supporters.
“It is nice get out and help the community,” Kutney said. “They help us and support us so much that it feels good to give back to them. We’re wiping down anything that people are touching and cleaning it up a bit to make it look nicer.”
Senior Hudson Vegoren said he feels “super lucky.”
“We have one of the nicest facilities in the state,” he said. “It definitely wouldn’t be possible without the local businesses and all the community support that we get. We’re happy to give back, it’s not much, but we’re happy to give it.”
Cheerleaders Maria Kanenwisher and Brynn Lehtola, both juniors, said they were happy to participate in the service project.
“It is beneficial to the businesses downtown and it makes their jobs easier,” Lehtola said.
“When we support the community, they like to support Hamilton High School,” Kanenwisher said.
They both play basketball and tennis and have hopes the school year will continue so they get to play in spite of a coronavirus pandemic.
“I think it is nerve racking but if we take precautions we’ll be okay,” Lehtola said. “They don’t know what will happen for basketball yet.”
Kanenwisher said she’s excited to start school on Sept. 8 especially since she school has been out since March 16.
The Bronc girls and boys golf team was painting the fence at the River Park on the south west edge of Hamilton.
Coach Owen Burch said HHS’s sports community service day is “awesome.”
“The kids take pride in the community and the community can see them working and that the kids love the community and take the initiative to work at it,” Burch said. “We’ve had a lot of people drive by and honk. This fence here, we didn’t realize how bad it was. Painting it makes an amazing difference, it just looks so good.”
Bronc golfers helped replace some of the wood then painted the fence in Bronc colors. Paint and wood was supplied by the Hamilton Parks Department.
“These are great kids, so it is fun to watch,” Burch said. “Everyone is in a mask that’s the way we do things now. I told them if they want the [golf] season to continue we have to do it.”
Bronc golf has attended three varsity and one junior varsity tournaments.
“Four days in a row, this is our first day off,” Burch said. “We’ve been on the road and the kids have done a really nice job. We have four solid upperclassmen leaders.”
Bronc girls golf team member Hayley Bender said, “[Painting at River Park] has been a good team bonding experience.”
Boys and girls soccer team members were doing various chores at the Fairgrounds, the cross country team pulled weeds at Skalkaho Bend Park and the Bronc volleyball team cleaned up the Highway Bridge to Woods Crossing.
Hamilton Mayor Dominic Farrenkopf thanked Chad DeLong and Hamilton High School's athletic department for reaching out to the community for service projects.
“Not only do projects like this benefit the community, it gives the student athletes a way to give back and get involved in their community in a well-organized fashion,” Farrenkopf said. “Finding community service projects is not always easy and the City of Hamilton being able to offer a project opportunity is very important to me. I like to think of opportunities like this as bending children's twigs in the right direction. It is up to us to nurture our students.”