Volunteer of the Week: Sherese Loblanco, Parent Coordinator of the Tappan Zee High School Red and White Athletics Booster Club

By Barry Warner

Sherese Loblanco is a very active volunteer who coordinates the concession stands at school events, recruits and manages parent volunteers and works closely with the Athletics Department, so the proceeds of funds raised directly benefit athletes and the athletic programs.

“Sherese is an integral part of our athletic team,” said Keith Johnson, TZHS Athletic Director. “She sacrifices many hours to make sure that our student athletes are kept at a high standard. She helps out with all the sports dinners and homecoming games, as well as runs the concession stands and everything else that’s involved with getting them organized. Sherese and I have a great relationship and I don’t think I could do what I do without her. She is a tremendous help to the Tappan Zee Athletic Program.”

“The mission of the Red and White Booster Club is to support the varsity athletes of the high school and the modified sports teams at the middle school,” Loblanco said. “I became part of the red and white because I have two sons in the sports programs. So to be part of their lives, I have been involved for the last six years. The concession stand is staffed by about 10 volunteer parents. We sell candy, hot dogs pretzels, hamburgers and sodas. To raise additional funds, we sold t-shirts to a large number of our fans who attend the basketball and football games. We helped the red sea be part of the red sea. The fans are the red sea. At the end of the season, we had a varsity dinner for the high school athletes and for the middle school participants we had an ice cream social.”

An Athletic Director understands that booster clubs are a critical component to high school athletics. What is also recognizable is the need to discover ways to mobilize parents in our very busy culture. Booster clubs engage parents in the various sports to fundraise for uniforms, trips and to organize quickly for an event. The more parents feel connected to ‘what is going on,’ the more they will be willing to donate their time and energy to a common goal. Booster clubs serve as an effective platform for accomplishing the goal of giving student athletes the most positive experience in high school athletics. In fact, it is suggested that students who are involved in extracurricular activities, such as sports teams, enjoy their high school experiences more, are better prepared to meet the challenges of adult life and increase their chances for scholarships and other college successes. Extracurricular activities also build memories and friendships that last a lifetime. Volunteering for a booster club is a great way to support students, meet other parents and get involved in the community.

Watching high school football and basketball games can work up an appetite for the bleacher fans. According to the website www.signupgenius.com, good concession stands do not just happen as they take work and a coordinated effort by many active volunteer parents.

Here are 10 ideas to help make the concession stand run smoothly:

  • Appoint a Leader: The person in charge should organize and oversee all concession activities.
  • Build a Team: Delegate duties to spread the work around that include stocking, shopping, cash management and selling, as well as setting up and tearing down.
  • Communicate with Volunteers Clearly: Be sure they know when to report and keep track of each volunteer’s work schedule.
  • Develop a Budget: Plan out the money that is needed to spend on equipment, food and other supplies as this will help to figure out how much profit has to be made on food items.
  • Create a Menu: Serve hot dogs, burgers, corn dogs, loaded nachos, funnel cakes, honey-roasted peanuts, popcorn, soft pretzels and sodas.
  • Keep a Log: Maintain a weekly log of what was purchased, sold and the leftover inventory.
  • Choose a Cashbox Supervisor: Have enough coins and small bills for early transactions, reconcile cash and inventory and make money deposits at the bank.
  • Wear a Uniform: When serving food, it is important to look professional and neat. Order t-shirts for the volunteers to wear, so everyone matches.
  • Choose foods that can be served quickly: Snack bar lines can get long, but if the food is ready to go, fans can get back to their seats quickly.
  • Take frequent stock: Ensure that popular snacks are not sold out and reorder to fill in those items.

It is important to show appreciation to the volunteers by letting the team know that their efforts helped to provide funds to purchase needed items, such as new uniforms. Concession stands provide more than food and refreshment for the spectators as they give volunteer parents an opportunity to model teamwork for their kids and for the good of the sports they play.

For information about volunteering for the TZHS Red and White Booster Club, call 845-680-1600.