The Monett Athletic Booster Club is hoping to expand its role in the community and increase membership in the coming year.
Focused on all sports at the high school level in Monett, the Athletic Booster Club manages concession stands for all home games. Participants also handle concessions for middle school events and assist at Mighty Mite football games, which are held at Burl Fowler Stadium.
Brian Homfeldt, president of the club, said the organization has made a significant financial contribution to the operation of Monett sports out of its revenues over the years. The club was the driving force behind the construction of the new concession building at Burl Fowler Stadium, leading the fundraising effort that was backed by major businesses and individuals.
Club revenues and donations helped buy a new wrestling mat, contributed to building the new batting cages at North Park and provided a sizable donation toward the press box at the Fowler Stadium.
"We'd like to get the community involved, make them feel like they are part of it and spread spirit about the town," Homfeldt said.
To that end, the Athletic Booster Club plans to launch a new campaign this fall for members. The effort will kick off on Spirit Night at the Fowler Stadium on Aug. 15 when the club will hold a tailgate party in the parking lot.
Homfeldt said the organization has become a committee of 10 people. With more participating, more could be done. Athletic Director Alan Spencer has also said that at a time when school funding is tighter, he may need to turn to the Boosters more for assistance.
The Athletic Booster Club originally organized in 1961 as the Quarterback Club. Monett Times Editor and Publisher Dick Brady was its first president. The organization gave out top offensive and defensive awards to athletes in each sport. As the number of sports grew, participants changed their name to reflect the inclusion of all sports.
Homfeldt said the group would like to revive the Quarterback Club as a kind of auxiliary.
Memberships in the Athletic Booster Club will be offered at four levels: $25, $50, $100 and $150. Those contributing at the top level will get a pass to all Monett High School athletic events and Monett Middle School. Corporate memberships will be offered at the gold level for $250, purple level for $500 and Cub Pride level for $1,000.
"We've got a lot of ideas for neat ways to promote the schools and athletics," Homefledt said. "As we get more people involved, there's a lot of activities we can do down the road."
One of the ideas suggested is to put up signage, possibly around the school, announcing when athletic events will be held. The group would also like to hold periodic jamborees, inviting all members to a barbecue where information on programs and projects could be passed along.
Homfeldt said the group hopes to work closely with the school district to make better use of the district's webpage for keeping information in front of the public.
"[Superintendent] John Jungmann and [Principal] David Steward have been so supportive of us doing this work," Homfeldt said. "Alan Spencer has always been a mainstay with the Booster Club and has helped us a lot," Homfeldt said.
"We've got a lot going on. A lot of good folds are working really hard. We just want to spread the word," Homfeldt said.