Softball scores with FLAMEingo

Flames softball raised nearly $4,200 for the fight against breast cancer. At Flock the Quad, team members filled the plaza with plastic flamingoes and made money with a bake sale and games.

At Flock the Quad last spring, team members filled the plaza with plastic flamingoes and made money with a bake sale and games.

How does the women’s softball team find time to raise money for breast cancer, between taking a full load of classes and daily practice?

Teamwork, just like on the field.

“We are so busy with school and softball, it definitely took the help of the entire team to get the fundraiser to work,” said former first baseman and 2013 kinesiology graduate Coryn Schmit.

There were some initial hurdles for the team. The Flames wanted a creative way to raise money, rather than asking for donations. Raffles and sweepstakes were considered but needed licensing, and other events would have been considered gambling by the NCAA, Schmit said.

Then came the idea for FLAMEingo.

The drive originated in December as an idea to extend the team’s breast cancer awareness efforts throughout the year.

“It really meant something,” said Jacki Fletcher, senior in kinesiology and pitcher/infielder for the Flames.

Each player on the team received a plastic flamingo with a hole cut in the top, making a sort of piggy bank.

Team members took the flamingo banks to athletic events to get donations and spread awareness.

“It is a way for us to do something to give back to the community,” Schmit said.  “It gives the graduating players something to leave the program with that is bigger than softball alone.”

At April’s Flock the Quad event, the team filled the quad with plastic flamingos — one for every $10 raised — and raised money with games and a bake sale.

Through FLAMEingo donations and an American Cancer Society website, the team raised nearly $4,200 for Taking Strides Against Breast Cancer.

The Flames even managed to save $400 for next year’s startup fund.

“It’s awesome that it’s going to be an ongoing thing. I’m looking forward to getting started,” said Fletcher, who takes over the fundraising this year.


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