Nov 12, 2022
GAME DAY APPROACHES — Rikki Kamarados, treasurer of the Steubenville Lions Club, and Domenick Mucci, membership chair, look over a flier offering specifics about the organization’s upcoming fundraiser they hope the community will support. The 27th-annual Ohio State-Michigan Tailgate Party will be held Nov. 26 at Froehlich’s Classic Corner. — Janice Kiaski
STEUBENVILLE — As it inches closer toward its 100th anniversary, the “small but mighty” in membership Steubenville Lions Club continues to roar.
And one thing it’s making noise about is the upcoming key fundraiser that helps support the many projects and programs that are the hallmarks of the longtime local service organization.
The 27th-annual Ohio State-Michigan game tailgate party is happening Nov. 26 at Froehlich’s Classic Corner, 501 Washington St., Steubenville, beginning at noon, and tickets remain available to support the important fundraiser, according to Domenick Mucci, membership chair, and Rikki Kamarados, its treasurer.
A $60 ticket entitles two people to enjoy the event — food and beverages — and to know proceeds benefit Lions charities, according to Mucci.
“We have an open bar during the game up until the end of the third quarter,” Mucci explained. “We have the food out all during the game, tailgate food, which is a great menu that Froehlich’s prepares for us, and then they have a chance of winning some money — the grand prize being $2,500. Only 200 tickets are sold.
“We are struggling in selling out of our tickets,” he continued. “We’re still going through with the event, but if anybody’s interested, it’s a great afternoon out, again two people, $60, and the food, beverages and a chance of winning money,” Mucci said.
“And watching the game on big screen TV,” interjected Kamarados.
Tickets include the drawing for cash prizes in a reverse drawing that offers: $100, first number drawn; $50, every 25th number drawn; $50, fourth number from last drawn; $100, third number from last drawn; $150, second number from last drawn; $200, next to last number drawn; and $2,500, last number drawn.
The winner need not be present.
Tickets are available by contacting Mucci at (740) 381-7928 or from any Lions Club member. They are available at Froehlich’s Classic Corner as well as at the Downtown Bakery at 151 S. Fourth St., Steubenville. They will be available at the door if any remain.
“The tailgate party that we’re talking about helps us with helping people with glasses, helping people with the exams,” Kamarados said. “We sponsor scholarships locally for Catholic Central High School and Steubenville High School. We give each of the schools money for scholarships in May,” she explained.
The scholarships are based upon financial need, academic accomplishment and extracurricular endeavors, according to guidelines.
Lions Clubs International is the largest service club organization in the world with its 1.4 million members serving locally and globally.
“We give what’s called a parade of checks from international, and we help people with seeing eye dogs or diabetes but most of its (focus) has to do with eyesight,” she continued.
“There was actually a blind band that we helped form at Ohio State, and we help Akron Children’s Hospital, so there are a lot of different things that this money that we raise from the tailgate helps us with, but the two biggest things we do are the scholarships locally and helping with the eyesight (needs) locally,” she added.
The Steubenville Lions Club, established in 1924, sponsors a Leo Club at Harding Middle School; sponsors the pocket park in the 100 block of North Fourth Street where First Friday on Fourth activities are held; organizes the Steubenville Christmas parade lineup; rings bells for the Salvation Army of Steubenville; hosts a Christmas party each year at the School of Bright Promise; supports research foundations on diabetes and the prevention of blindness; collects used eyeglasses locally; and provides eye exams and eyeglasses for needy children and adults.
Applications for the latter are available at Ace Optical, located at 153 N. Fourth St., Steubenville. The phone number is (740) 283-2461.
A 40-year member of the Steubenville Lions Club, Mucci said he can offer multiple reasons why someone should be a member of the local organization approaching its centennial.
“Here’s a list of the activities that we do for the community, and we have been doing,” Mucci said.
“Recently we, in conjunction with the JB Green Team, purchased two benches for the Steubenville Marina and installed those. And we did a for-service day, a cleanup for the pocket park on Fourth Street where they hold a lot of activities for the First Friday, so we’re participating in that, but our main goal is really to give back to the community in the areas of eyesight, so we assist people with eye exams and glasses,” Mucci said.
“We collect old glasses for the needy and they go to third world countries, because Lions Club is international,” Kamarados said.
The club has 12 members. “We’re low (in numbers), but we’re mighty,” Kamarados said. The club’s motto is “We Serve,” and meetings are noon luncheon and business gatherings held at Froehlich’s Classic Corner on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month.
“It’s an enjoyable group, she said. “Other than this tailgate party, trying to get things going, there’s not a lot of stress in it because you’re not required to come to meetings. We’d like people come to meetings. And it’s not a real expensive club to even join either. It’s $100 dues for the whole year.”
Mucci has been in the club for close to 40 years.
“We used to have concerts at the St. John Arena, the Sounds for Sight concert where we invited all the area high school bands to play, and it was great evening,” he reminisced. “We have always been a very active club, but I think recently with the change and, of course, COVID and everything else, membership in many of the organizations are suffering, and so did the Lions Club, so we’re out trying to continue our service to the community and recruit members,” he said.
“The tailgate party for the Ohio State-Michigan game actually started 27 years ago, and it started with the thought of doing it for pro games, and we picked the Steelers and the Cleveland game, and our very first activity for the tailgate party was at the St. John Arena, and it was a great success. That year, the final prize was two tickets to the bowl game, airline tickets to Hawaii for the game and lodging. So it was a big, big thing,” he added.
“We have continued that tradition with the tailgate party, and we moved it from pro games to Ohio for college teams, and we picked the Ohio State-Michigan game, which has been a great success. If anybody comes to the tailgate party, they’ll see the crowd we have, and we have both Ohio State-Michigan fans there — however, mostly Ohio State fans,” he said.
“We’re showing support for our community, and we’re raising money locally, but more importantly to me, we’re showing support for Ohio State,” he said.
Kamarados has more than 15 years invested in membership.
“Back then, in the early 2000s, I was looking to get into one of the service groups, and because of the eyesight and the diabetes in my family, this to me was the club to join and actually, Joe DiCarlo and Bill Hendricks were the ones who got me in,” she said.
The two anticipate there will be some kind of a 100-year anniversary celebration to plan. “We just started mentioning it a little bit, so more than likely there will be some kind of banquet going on,” Kamarados said.
The organization held a 90-year celebration in 2014 at Hellenic Hall at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Steubenville.
Mike Zinno is president of the club and Marlon Moore, vice president. Tim Walters serves as secretary.
For information on the club or to join, visit the Facebook page; call (740) 632-4311; e-mail; or write to the club at P.O. Box 848, Steubenville OH 43952.
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