The summer’s almost officially gone for almost every school-age kid in the area and that means it’s back-to-work.
But it wasn’t all kick-back and do nothing for Clovis and Portales youth this summer. In fact, the onset of autumn for many merely means a switch from one kind of labor to another.
Although teens and younger certainly got in their downtime, ample hours were also spent raising money for the various clubs and teams to which they belong.
“Pretty hard,” answered Kyler Brewer-Hill, a quarterback for the Clovis football team, when asked how hard he worked on selling coupon books to raise money for the CHS football booster club.
“I sold my first 15 and not everybody sold their (quota), so my mom told me I had to sell more,” said Brewer-Hill, who ended up selling 44 of the $20 units. “I started on that blitz day we had, at the end of July. I went to houses of people I knew mostly, but I also went to Sonic and sold five of them.
“We like getting involved, because it pays for our charter buses and stuff,” he added.
The most visible methods of fundraising were the ubiquitous car washes in both Clovis and Portales as callers held signs near a street and beckoned drivers to pull over, while their fellow workers waited armed with buckets and cloths.
Rocky Banda, a board member for the Roosevelt County Little League, estimated it cost around $4,000 to sent two Portales-based all-star baseball teams to Albuquerque for the state championships.
The money, for many baseball and softball participants, essentially had to be raised in between games and practices during the summer itself.
“It can be a stressful situation for families, but its all worth it if its for the kids,” said Banda, who estimated his league initiated four car washes to help pay for expenses. “You know, any kid is going to want to play and swim more than they want to work. I try to work ‘em as hard as I can.”
Dennis Smith coached a fast-pitch girls softball team and a slow-pitch boys squad in Clovis. Methods of raising the dough actually included selling the dough-nuts, that is. Smith and his team picked up Krispy Kreme donuts in Lubbock and hauled them back to Clovis to sell at various businesses.
“It is a lot of work. If you’re not doing something with each other everyday, it’s every other day,” Smith said.
Plenty of other unseen ways of driving money to a particular group were also at work during the summer, however.
“What we try to do is just go into the community and ask for donations,” said Banda of his most effective way of drumming up funds in Portales.
In Clovis, high school band members were trying to raise money for a fall trip to Arlington, Texas for a marching contest there.
In itself, that may have been fairly quiet to the community-at-large. But the efforts will culminate in a public display today as the Clovis marching band holds its annual March-a-thon through the streets of the city.
Last year, according to band director Bill Allred, one enterprising band member raised more than $1,000 for the 8-mile march. He wasn’t able to say, though, whether that same member — now a senior — had scooped up a similar amount for this year’s event.
Whether the summer was spent on fundraising, fruitless endeavors or spent working in some other direction would soon be discovered.
“I don’t know. I guess we’ll find out on Saturday,” Allred said.