This year, 13 turned out to be a lucky number for Granby Youth Lacrosse when it held its annual Bantam Lacrosse Jamboree for the 13th straight year on Sunday, April 22, under sunny skies in Salmon Brook Park. Granby hosted teams of third and fourth grade boys and girls from Avon, Burlington, Canton, Cheshire, Ellington, Farmington, Middletown, South Windsor, Suffield, Vernon and West Springfield. They competed in games with emphasis on fun, sportsmanship and learning new skills. This year we were privileged to have the Dodgers and Titans, local club teams, return to run free clinics for all participants.
Student Co-Chairs Georgia McDougall and Julia Olchowski helped organize the student volunteers that ran the event, as well as solicited donations for the raffle. Students earned community service hours and were able to give back to the organization that they grew up in while serving as role models for the youth players. This event was started by High School Scholar Athletes, Patrick Gunn and Hannah Burnett in 2005 as a senior project and has been going strong since.
The proceeds went to scholarships for two senior lacrosse players who demonstrated a passion for lacrosse, leadership, good sportsmanship, strong academics and a willingness to give back to the community.
This year’s recipients were Meaghan Leonardi and Rusty Stone. Both athletes started playing lacrosse at the early age of 5. Considering both families have been involved with the sport of lacrosse, as players, coaches and GYL Board members, this was not surprising. Both players volunteered at the Bantam Jamboree throughout their HS years, helped coach the youth players during their lacrosse seasons and were voted Captain of their HS Lacrosse teams this year. GYL is proud of these two scholar athletes who represent the values that the organization embodies: leadership, sportsmanship and character. We wish them all the best in the future.
Special thanks to the following businesses that donated to the raffle or as a vendor this year:
Beman’s Hardware, Jakes Wayback Burger, Granby Pizza, Rancho Viejo, Neo Day Spa, Toni Ann’s, Sartorius Sports, Vincent’s Sporting Goods, Grassroots Ice Cream, Han, Dodger’s Lacrosse Club, Titan’s Lacrosse Club, Rita’s Italian Ice, and Fine Designs.