veritas exquirere

Talon

veritas exquirere

Talon

veritas exquirere

Talon

Athletic Booster Club holds its first-ever tailgate

A new community fundraiser will now become an annual event
Students%2C+parents+and+faculty+gathered+on+the+tennis+courts+to+support+the+Athletic+Booster+Club%E2%80%99s+first+tailgate+event.
Anika Ravilla
Students, parents and faculty gathered on the tennis courts to support the Athletic Booster Club’s first tailgate event.

Before the kickoff of the Eagles’ second home game of the season, neon-clad students, parents and faculty gathered at the tennis court parking lots for Oak Park High School’s first-ever tailgate event. Hosted as a fundraiser by the Athletic Booster Club on Sept. 8, the event raised funds for the athletic department and many different programs within the school, all through barbecue, games and enjoying one another’s company.

“The reason I wanted to have a tailgate was because I wanted to bring OPUSD together as a community,” Athletic Booster Club Vice President Brianna Adams said. “So, not just Oak Park High School, but all five schools getting together too.”

In addition to the Athletic Booster Club’s fundraising presence, organizations like the Oak Park Instrumental Music Association and ASB were raising money as well. ASB’s setup included games like cornhole, matching ducks and water touchdown, where people paid to play for the chance to win a prize.

“[It was] just a fun little fundraiser idea where all the profits went into funding our school dances and rallies,” ASB student Maggie Ruan said.

ASB students worked in shifts to manage their arcade, dole out prizes and sell neon spirit wear to those who wanted to participate in the theme of the football game shortly after.

“It was so exciting to see all the parents and kids that came to support,” Senior Vice President Catherine Cheng said. “We can’t wait to set up our booth again next year!”

Coordinating the event was a lengthy process, ensuring that all activities were in compliance with the district’s insurance. Hiring a DJ and providing catering added more moving parts to putting on a successful tailgate.

“Really, I owe it all to the Feldman family, they’re the ones cooking tonight,” Adams said. “They were so selfless and generous and willing to come and do this for us so they were the ones who made it possible.”

Others also found the food to be a highlight of the experience.

“The best part of the tailgate was the food for sure,” Ruan said. “Whoever made that brisket must have been having a good day because it was actually incredible. I think I cried a little bit when I ate it.”

After its inaugural year, the pre-game tailgate will become a fixture for years to come, with improvements and new ideas to come from the Athletic Booster Club.

“I’m super happy,” Adams said. “I’m thrilled that everyone is here and having the food, I’m happy people are tailgating. We will definitely do it again.”

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Mara Hankins, Editor-in-Chief
A junior, Mara Hankins currently serves as the editor-in-chief for the 2022-2023 school year. She is also the director and founder of Medea Creek Middle School's Journalism Program, a student mentorship opportunity that has given younger students their own publication, the Panther Post. She was the news editor for the 2022-2023 school year and a senior staff writer for the 2021-2022 year.
Anika Ravilla, Art Director
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