'Troop Dreams' makes a visit to Lakes football family
When Lakes' football team takes the field against visiting Grayslake Central on Friday night, the Eagles will also be making a significant difference off the field to a special military family.
Lakes will be hosting a special military appreciation event called Troop Dreams to help make a deserving military family's wish come true. After final donations are totaled, the preapproved, prequalified military family will be invited at a later date to have their wish granted at Lakes in front of players, students, faculty and fans.
Donations will be accepted at the gate as well as concession stands and mini American flags and Troop Dreams rally towels will be sold for $5 to honor our military with a "wave of patriotism" in the stands. Proceeds from donations and merchandise sales will be used to fund the wish of a preapproved, prequalified military family in Illinois that has not had the opportunity to experience many things we Americans take for granted due to deployment, injury, disability and/or financial limitations.
"When I first heard of this organization, I immediately knew our football program needed to help," Lakes football coach Luke Mertens said. "I am so honored to be part of a country where so many men and women volunteer to protect us. Moreover, many of our alums are currently serving in the military, so I also view this as a way to honor their service to our country.
"We hope our players, students and their families, friends and neighbors attend the game to make this a truly special military appreciation event and a great reflection on our entire Lakes community."
Added Mitch Salzstein, executive director of The Charity Stripe: "Empowering young football players and their teams to 'Go The Extra Yard' to make military family wishes come true is an honor ... a perfect way of thanking our military for protecting our families and safeguarding our freedoms. Troop dreams is not only a community service project, but an American Project and we're so proud to partner with Lakes Community High School and be such an integral part of these truly special school events."