Recorder: "Wave players serve community"

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Wave players serve community

By THOMAS JOHNSTON

Staff Writer

Published: 8/13/2019 8:57:10 PM

GHS football players serve food at John Zon Community Center

Photo credit: Dan Little

The Greenfield High School football team continued its now annual tradition of giving back to the community Tuesday, serving hamburgers and hot dogs to 50 members of the community at the John Zon Community Center.

The event was organized by assistant coach Glenn Wilson, who works for the Greenfield Department of Public Works. One of his jobs includes working at the community center. He brought the idea to have players serve food four years ago to head coach Mike Kuchieski, and the team has done it ever since.

“These people have done a lot for us,” Kuchieski said. “We’re going to try to do something for them right before the season. It gets us all together and gives us a little camaraderie before we start (practice) Friday. We want the players to be great community citizens.”

Wilson has made sure every team he has been a part of has done something to give back to the people of the community.

When he coached at Pioneer for 10 years, he had the players cut lawns and weed whack for the seniors in Northfield. When he coached at Brattleboro for 20 years, he would have the players cook at the community center, and also for firefighters and police officers.

He feels student-athletes should always find a way to get involved in the towns they live in.

“It builds character,” Wilson said. “They enjoy being here. They really do. It was not difficult to get volunteers. When I asked if people could help out, everyone said ‘Yes, I would love to.’ We have a great group of kids. This thing got signed up in a hurry. It’s great on both sides between the seniors and the student-athletes. It’s a win-win for everybody. You can not do enough for giving back to the community.”

For community member Sandy Herzig, a Greenfield High School alum, it was exciting to see the football team give back.

“It’s real nice to see them,” Herzig said. “Our kids were in sports. You follow what goes on in town with the sports.”

With the coaches running the grill, the players were each given tasks, from bringing the food inside to cleaning the plates up afterward.

The players enjoyed giving back to the people who offer their support throughout the football season.

“The community gives us so much so it’s good to give back to them,” said junior Jake Sak, who has participated in the event the past three years. “It’s good to get the team together and give back to our biggest supporters, the peo ple who show up to our games.”

With preseason camp kicking off later in the week, the event was a chance for the players to get together and grow as a team before the grind of the season begins.

“It’s great going into the season,” senior Cameron Lackey said. “It’s great to get the bond going between my teammates and give back to my community.”

The Green Wave begin practice Friday, with their opening game a month away on Sept. 13 at Smith Vocational.