I had asked for a little help a few months ago. I raised the “Bat Signal,” if you will, searching for some assistance with the Tehachapi Warrior Booster Club, a nonprofit club that was recovering from a bit of a rebuilding year in 2018-19.
With that call came a promise as well, a promise to chip in myself, to help be a part of the solution instead of someone who believes they are capable of simply pointing out the obvious. Lord knows we have plenty of that type of people walking this Earth. I’d like to separate myself.
As the home season started this past week, it wasn’t only that I put my money where my mouth was. Actually, other people put their money where my mouth was. If that makes sense? Our small but mighty Boosters board was able to put our minds together and create a new business sponsorship program. Pulling from my years in college athletics and the radio advertising worlds, we put together a set of business sponsorships to coincide with the traditional family memberships. The success was mind-blowing.
As of last week, the new business sponsorship program raised more than $18,000 for our teams. This is money that will be drawn upon as needed for uniforms, practice gear and even awarded as college scholarships to our graduating seniors this spring. It’s a game-changer for some of our teams and a step in the right direction for many others. Our challenges are far from over, funding being what it is, but this is certainly a green and black lining to that puffy white cloud.
I had initially hoped for $25,000 — just a number I pulled out of the air when I started calling on some of our local business folks about helping out. While I’m not totally disappointed that I didn’t get there on the cash front, we had a pair of companies step up with in-kind donations for things like uniforms and medical services during our games. That value, coupled with our cash donations, far exceeds that goal. So, I guess there’s always that if you want to get technical; over-achieving-me still thinks we were just short of a lofty goal.
I can’t say enough about this group of leaders, businesspeople, alumni, community activists and those who simply wanted to help out our teams as much as I do. Special thanks to S-Power, Sage Ranch, Aspen Builders, Dignified Home Loans, Cerro Coso Community College, Dignity Health and Alta One Federal Credit Union for their major contributions to our cause. There were companies of all sizes like DC’s RV Center, TK Pizza, Team Linda and Stacey at Keller Williams, Kelcy’s, Snow Orthodontics and M&M Sports that sponsored as well alongside local labor groups like the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 12 and United Steel Workers Local 12-52.
You’ll hear their names on the public address system at football and basketball games and you’ll see their logos on programs and banners around the THS facilities. Just know that these people cared enough to dig deep into their business pockets and make the Warriors a priority; we’d appreciate you supporting them in return. We’ve certainly made it attractive to be a business sponsor and we still have some time if your business is interested. Maybe you can help push us past that crazy $25,000 goal some has-been athlete placed on the table?
Strive for perfection and achieve excellence. With that said, I couldn’t be more proud to be from this town, to be placed in this exact moment in history and have the pleasure of partnering with some great people to make a difference for our youth, for our team, for our Warriors.
Corey Costelloe has covered NCAA, professional and local sports for more than 20 years as a reporter and broadcaster. A THS graduate, he now resides in Tehachapi. He can be reached at email@example.com. The opinions expressed are his own.