The Farmingdale/Massapequa-based Columbus Lodge #2143 softball team (The Golden Lions) this week announced that it will participate in the Easter Seals Softball Classic 2000. The Softball Classic will be held on Friday, July 28 through Sunday, July 30 at Cantiague Park in Hicksville. All proceeds will benefit the Easter Seals Society of New York.
Last year, the Sons of Italy - Columbus Lodge #2143 softball team helped raise over $15,000 for the Easter Seals Society. On July 29, the lodge will get a chance to surpass that figure at the Easter Seals Softball Classic 2000, to be held at Cantiague Park in Hicksville.
The Columbus Lodge Golden Lions will play against various corporate sponsored teams on Saturday, July 29. To play against the Golden Lions, corporate teams must make a minimum contribution of $500 to the Easter Seals Society. "Last year the guys played three games in 98 degree weather," said Tony Ragno, first vice president of the Columbus Lodge #2143.
Having recorded a perfect 5-0 record over the past two years, the Columbus Lodge enters the Easter Seals Softball Classic as the only participant to be undefeated in both co-ed and men's competition in 1998 and 1999. "Companies donate a lot of money to play us," said Lions' captain Ed Bochynski. "The games we played in last year generated over $15,000."
Last year the Columbus Lodge defeated KPMG, the United States Postal Service and Shanhoit Corporation. "The games are fun," said Bochynski, "but the real satisfaction comes in helping Easter Seals raise the funds necessary to send a disabled child to camp or provide vocational training for disabled adults."
Founded in 1919, the Easter Seals Society was originally known as the Ohio Society for Crippled Children. To raise money for its programs, the society began selling decorative stamps. The stamps were sold each spring (the season of rebirth and renewal) and became known as Easter Seals.
The seals became so closely associated with the organization's work that in 1967, its name was changed to the National Easter Seals Society. Today the organization's nationwide network of 105 affiliates operates nearly 400 centers throughout the United States. For almost 20 years the National Health Council has ranked Easter Seals first in percentage of program dollars spent on director services (96 percent).
The Columbus Lodge Golden Lions is a softball team dedicated to raising money for various charitable organizations. All players are members of the Columbus Lodge #2143, a not-for-profit fraternal organization located at 2143 Boundary Avenue in South Farmingdale. Since 1997, the Golden Lions participation in fund-raising events has helped raise over $314,000 for Long Island charities.
The Columbus Lodge is a member of the Sons of Italy and operates under the belief that the value of a man should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is about to receive. The lodge offers its members various social and recreational activities, as well as community and charity involvement. For information on becoming a lodge member, one may contact Pete Gisonda at 798-3972.