According to Trace Vaughn, the founding president in 2007, and currently serving as the Lt. Governor for Area 2 of the Georgia District of Optimist International, this is the fifth year the organization has held the volleyball tournament.
“We had a great year. We had 25 teams register and 24 participated,” said Vaughn, who also said the event raised $6,000.
Each year the Optimist club donates the funds raised to different organizations, and this year The Bridge and The Winner’s Club are splitting the proceeds of this year’s event.
The Bridge is an organization set up with the VAC that helps the homeless around Gordon County, and The Winner’s Club helps challenged children in Gordon Couty.
Part of the funds raised also go to support Sarah’s Snacks at the Children’s Hospital at Erlanger in Chattanooga. Bob and Susan Williams, who run the program and are the parents of the late Sarah Williams, hand out snacks to the young cancer patients.
In first place was Buddies Home Furnishing, and Rak Outfitters came in second, according to Vaughn.
Team Jess was there to support Jessica Lucille Lumpkin, a local 23-year-old who recently passed away Wednesday, Sept. 5 at Emory University Hospital.
A 2007 graduate of Gordon Central High School, Lumpkin graduated in May 2012 from Kennesaw State University with a Bachelor’s degree, and was a member of the track team.
“Jessica’s comedic personality and upbeat attitude would always keep the grind of a hard workout or long competition moving with enjoyment,” said Andy Eggerth, head coach of track and field at Kennesaw State University. “She was truly a treasure who will be deeply missed by the many lives she’s touched.”
The sponsors for the mud volleyball tournament this year were AGC Pediatrics, Branch Banking & Trust, Brannon & Sons Funeral Home, Century Bank, Chick Fil A, Evco Plastics, Home Depot, Sonoraville High School, Starr Mathews Insurance Agency and Thomas Funeral Home.
The mission statement for the Optimist Club is by providing hope and positive vision; Optimists bring out the best in kids.
The purpose of Optimist International is to develop optimism as a philosophy of life utilizing the tenets of the Optimist Creed; To promote an active interest in good government and civic affairs; To inspire respect for the law; To promote patriotism and work for international accord and friendship among all people; To aid and encourage the development of youth, in the belief that the giving of one’s self in service to others will advance the well-being of humankind, community life and the world.