Earlier today, the Downtown Columbus Lions Club hosted its First Annual Volleyball Fundaiser benefiting a local charity, Pilot Dogs. The event was hosted at the Loose Goose Tavern in Grandview, which is part owned by Downtown Columbus Lion Randy Haffey. There were a total of eight teams in competition for bragging rights and a $250 gift certificate toward food and drinks at the Loose Goose Tavern. The eight teams were recruited by members and friends of the Downtown Columbus Lions Club and featured some clever names including: “Smack That Pass”, “Hardcore Sets”, “Hixen’s Heroes”, “The Dusty Ducks”, “Kiss My Pass”, “Rack City MBA’s”, “Back That Pass Up”, and last but not least “Sand Blasters”.
The weather was perfect for the event which featured two round robin matches to determine seeding for the Championship Tournament. From the onset, there were two teams that were clearly the toast of the tournament, “Smack That Pass” and “Kiss My Pass” that looked like they had done this before. Those two teams moved quickly through the competition to meet in the Championship Game of the Tournament. In a 2 sets to 0 victory, “Smack That Pass”, which was captained by former Downtown Columbus Lions President Tony Ruberg, came away with a hard fought championship. Team members received the $250 gift certificate and can now plan their Championship Celebration.
For those 4 teams that were clearly not the toast of the tournament, (meaning losers in the first round), they were paired up in the Lions Consolation Bracket. In a bracket filled with pride and relentless efforts from teams such as “Hardcore Sets”, and “Rack City MBA’s”, two teams met in a spirited championship game which was fueled mainly by the desire to just be done playing. In the consolation finale “Sand Blasters” captained by former Downtown Columbus Lions Club President Ashley Fellers, topped “Hixen’s Heroes”. For their accomplishments, “Sand Blasters” are awarded back their diginity.
The event was a great event which featured a lunch cookout style buffet as well as two staples at every Volleyball Tournament in Columbus, Bud Light and Yuengling beers. Just before lunch time, a surprise guest showed up, the Mobile “Thirst Aid” Unit featuring two of Columbus’ original home grown favorites, Frostop Rootbeer and Hoster Beer. The Mobile “Thirst Aid” Unit helped quench the thirsts of the players as well as provide a twist of Columbus to the event. It you have not tried these delicious drinks, you can find them at your nearest Andersens store.
The event was also attended by several key members of the Lions organization. Lions District 13-F Debbie Luttrell showed her support of the Downtown Club with her attendance and a donation toward the event and Zone Chair Jane Jarrow arrived after the Tri-Village Lions Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser to drop off donations from herself and Lion Kathy Whiteman. There were also representatives from Pilot Dogs on hand with a sight dog currently in training, “Joey”, to educate all those in attendance about the great organization.
But perhaps the biggest surprise of all was the attendance of Huma Sen, a Lions Club member from Instanbul, Turkey and her brother. Huma visited with Downtown Columbus Lions President Tyler Schleich back on January 31st when she was in town, and it just so happened that it worked out that she would be in town again during the event so she provided an International representation to the event. Perhaps next year we will have our first ever International Lions Charity Volleyball Tournament.
After the sand settled and the champions were crowned (it was a great day to be a former President of the Club!), the final tally on the fundraising resulted in over $1,000 being raised for Pilot Dogs. This money will be donated to be put toward their cause of training and furnishing guide dogs to the blind at absolutely no cost to the recipient.
The Downtown Columbus Lions would also like to invite you to join them at the Loose Goose (668 Grandview Avenue) on August 9th from 5p-7p for a happy hour to learn more about the organization and to see how you can become involved in the community. Thank you to all of those who participated in the event, voluntered for the event, and made donations for a great cause. Here’s to looking at making the second annual Volleyball Fundraiser an event bigger success.