Members of the Central Washington University football and baseball programs teamed up with fellow university students at a local fundraiser called "Fun Fair for Anthony" Saturday morning at Valley View Elementary School.
Anthony Lopez is an 11-year-old Ellensburg boy who has several physical disabilities and is transitioning from elementary school to Morgan Middle School next year. The "fun fair" fundraiser, which was organized by CWU communication majors, raised money to offset Anthony's medical bills, help purchase an adaptive bike for navigating Morgan Middle School, and possibly help Anthony attend summer camp later this year.
The fun fair had multiple "carnival like" activities for youth to participate in, and at almost every station the kids were met by student-athletes who helped guide them through the activity.
The most popular activity was the kickball and tee-ball station manned by CWU baseball players Scott Stone, Kasey Bielec, and Michael Sullivan. When Anthony arrived at the event, this was the first station he attended and his giant smile was greeted by Stone and Bielec who helped Anthony take some swings off the tee.
"It was great to see Anthony again," said CWU third baseman Kasey Bielec. "I know how much he [Anthony] loves the baseball team and it felt great to help him out. It was a great experience for me to be there with all the happy kids, I cant think of a better way to spend my Saturday."
This was not Anthony's first interaction with the CWU baseball team, as he met all the members of the club and threw out the first pitch on senior day at the CWU Baseball field back in April.
The event raised more than $835 for Anthony, which almost doubled the goal set by the COM 371 class that put on the event.
"The event went great and we almost raised double our goal for Anthony," said public relations major Claire Cox, who was one of the event organizers. "Having the student-athletes there was the best part of the experience according to our surveys and comments from the parents. The fact that the student-athletes were having just as much fun as the kids, if not more, really proved that the event was a hit."
If you would like to make a donation to Anthony you can visit Sparrowclubsusa.org and follow the steps under "donate" to find Anthony Lopez and make a contribution.
Media contact: Sammy Henderson, CWU Department of Athletics, 509-963-1485, email@example.com