PIGEON — When Ed Bach heard about the chance to play football at Laker Field one more time, the 1989 Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port graduate couldn’t resist.
“When I heard about the game — I bought my plane ticket,” said Bach, who is coming in for the game all the way from Florida. “I think every high school football player wants one more game.
“I'm hoping not to break anything. My son is a junior football player in high school now, and I am bringing him along to show him what tradition is all about.”
Since game coordinator Eric Buschlen got the news out to former players that he wanted to set this event up as a fundraiser, the game has taken off. With the help of Vassar’s Bill Germain, Buschlen has put together the benefit alumni football game between the Lakers and Vulcans, slated for 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 6.
All of the proceeds from the game will go toward the Vassar and EPBP football programs, the majority staying with the home team.
“My first goal is to raise money for the football program, next is to stay healthy,” said Buschlen, a 1989 EPBP graduate. “If we win, that would just be a bonus. It’s meant to be fun.”
So far, so good, according to Buschlen.
“Practices have been great,” he said. “Seeing all these ‘younger’ guys out there and the passion they have for Laker football is clear. It was all business at the first few practices. It’s also great to be out here with Coach George Gardy again, and to be teammates with Adam and Ron, the new varsity coaches, has been rewarding. The team is in great hands.”
The Laker team has alumni playing from 1985-2005, with alumni participating from 1979 and on. The Laker Honorary Captain for the coin toss is Keith Baur from the 1981 state championship team.
Buschlen has worked to add a special halftime event — The $10,000 Halftime Progressive Field Goal Competition.
Buschlen said fans who attend the game and are 18 years or older can enter to be in the contest. A random person will be selected at halftime, and if he or she completes the challenge, they will win $10,000 cash. The event is sponsored by both Vassar and Laker teams, as well as Thumb National Bank & Trust Co., Co-op Elevator, Burroughs Materials, VQS Village Quick Stop, Farm Bureau Insurance – Reggie Ignash, Le Village Market, 1st & Main Party Store, Esch Landscaping, LLC., and Shaggy J's Eatery and Pub.
The presentation of the funds raised will take place at a ceremony at halftime.
Admission is $5, with kids under 10 free.
For more information, contact Buschlen at (989) 860-7692 or firstname.lastname@example.org.