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Save Our Sports fundraiser Saturday

Courthouse Athletic Club to host donation-based activities
By: Sara Seyydin Journal Staff Writer
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Auburn-area residents can get ready to run, spike, swim and spin their way toward saving sports programs at local high schools. The all-day fundraiser, being hosted by Courthouse Athletic Club on Saturday has been designed so that virtually anybody can find an activity they enjoy. It will benefit Placer, Colfax and Bear River high schools. Rich Smith, who owns Courthouse Athletic Club, said he decided to sponsor the fundraiser because he doesn’t want to see any of the high schools lose their sports programs. When club member and Placer football mom Judy Sage came in and mentioned to Smith that the athletic programs were in trouble, he wanted to help brainstorm ways Courthouse Athletic Club could be a part of the solution. Finding a way for all of the Auburn-area high schools to benefit was also important to him. “If there are no sports, what are kids going to do after school? Get in trouble,” Smith said. “I have a real passion for them.” One-hundred percent of the funds raised will go to the area high schools. Smith said it will be easy for people to donate directly to their school because there will be a different table for each school. The first event slated for the day is a 5K run/walk. Smith said he was eager to offer that event because he ran track in high school. He sees the 5K continuing in future years. Sand volleyball, racquetball and horseshoe tournaments are other options. Smith said many club members are tri-athletes, so they will probably participate in the 5K run, spin-a-thon and swim-a-thon. Club members will still be able to use the facilities while the events are going on. Smith said that while the fundraiser is open to the public, many members will probably join in on the fun. “All of our club members either have kids in high school, had kids in high school or will have kids in high school,” Smith said. Sage has children at Placer High and E.V. Cain Charter Middle School. She said E.V. Cain is even offering students the opportunity to make up miles missed in their P.E. classes at the Save Our Sports 5K. “We even have E.V. Cain wanting to participate because they are a feeder school to Placer,” Sage said. “It’s just a good community event. The whole working as a community thing — that has been my message from the beginning. We see the value of not just athletics, but the students as a whole.” Her son forgot his E.V. Cain P.E. shorts a couple of times this year, so he will be among those logging a few miles around the Dewitt Center. Placer High girls basketball coach Tony Camillucci said the broader fundraising is needed right now. “This is big for all the sports. This is just as important as raising money for each individual team,” Camillucci said. “The general athletic fund pays for things like officials and transportation.” Camillucci said while the community may be inundated with athletic fundraisers, he continues to see those who are willing to give in the Auburn-area. “Auburn is such a great community. They just give and give, even when they don’t necessarily have the money,” Camillucci said. “It’s not easy. I just wish there was a pot of gold so we didn’t have to fundraise so much. It’s hard, but we still love coaching. I’ll do anything I can to save high school sports.” Camillucci said most sports programs have also made as many cutbacks as they can. Many have eliminated transportation to away games, while extras like warm-up sweats and team lunches were often the first to go. Registration is available in advance or from 6-8 a.m. on Saturday. There is a minimum donation of $10. For more information, visit www.cacfit.com or e-mail richards@cacfit.com. Reach Sara Seyydin at saras@goldcountrymedia.com.