COAL CITY – Barb McGinn is a mom on a mission.
During the last year, the Coal City tennis mom and athletic booster has raised more than $3,500 for Coal City High School’s tennis team.
McGinn is a member of Coal City High School’s Athletic Boosters board and has triplets – Michael, Katie and Carli McGinn – on the tennis team, but she insists that is not why she is raising the money.
“I’m not doing this because my kids are involved,” McGinn said. “I joined the boosters to make a real difference and I saw that the tennis courts were in need.”
One of the first projects was securing seating for spectators and players at the courts. McGinn began asking local businesses and players’ parents to donate the funds needed to buy bleachers.
More than 14 donors contributed funds that allowed for the purchase of six benches.
Next up were the school’s plywood practice boards: Coach Matt Leman told McGinn he would like to have the boards painted. The McGinn children spent their spring break decorating the boards with the team name, mascot and tennis balls.
“We try to help out all of our sports teams and this was a time when we could help
out tennis,” Coal City High School Principal Mitch Hamann said. “These are improvements that will definitely enhance the tennis programs.”
With leftover funds, McGinn said she and Leman agreed to purchase a storage facility. McGinn approached the Grundy County Vocational Center about purchasing a shed, and Bob Davis of Bob’s Advanced Auto & Tire in Coal City offered to deliver the shed to the courts for free.
The cause caught Davis and his fiance Debbie Schwier’s attention because Davis’ daughter Kayla played on the tennis team when she was a student at Coal City.
“Kayla used to play and we just really believe in giving back to the kids, so we were happy to donate,” Schwier said.
The team recently presented Davis and Schwier with a cookie cake to thank them.
“It was awesome,” Schwier said. “We totally didn’t see it coming.”
Next on the project list is buying new windscreens for the courts. McGinn said she would continue fundraising until the end of the school year to help pay for them.
“The kids are ecstatic,” McGinn said about the court improvements. “It’s been great.”