Over $76,000 Raised for Adoption Through Mustaches That Matter

The Ekwall family of Walnut Creek Johnston spent five weeks in Columbia this summer. Mustaches That Matter helped the Ekwalls adopt Jose (13) and Maria (11) from Columbia and bring them home to Iowa. 

Mustaches That Matter launched July 25, and within the first week, we met our goal of raising $25,000. In one month Mustaches That Matter raised $76,300, which will help families in the adoption process bring children home.

Throughout the campaign, 206 men participated by growing their own mustaches. The men passed out business cards and engaged in conversations throughout the month to ask family, friends, and coworkers to financially sponsor their mustaches. Although the mustache contest ended August 25, donations can still be given through the MTM website.

Mustaches That Matter leverages the power of mustaches to help families in the adoption process cross their financial finish line, whether adopting internationally, domestically, or through the foster care system. All the funds raised go into our adoption assistance fund to help multiple families, like the Ekwalls, each year.

Mustaches That Matter also received media attention and was featured on both WHO TV Channel 13 News and Great Day on KCWI 23, raising further awareness about adoption.

The 2014 Mustache That Matters Award recipients will be displayed at the Walnut Creek Downtown and Windsor Heights locations. Jordan Harlow won the Most Valuable Mustache award for raising $4,050. The Most Macho Mustache Award was given to Kyle Kurtenbach who earned 2,402 votes. Lucas Vander Weerdt won the Most Magnificent Mustache Award with 164 votes, and the Most Meager Mustache Award was earned by Alex Crittenden with 1,707 votes.

Visit www.mustachesthatmatter.com to learn more about the campaign and the Ekwall family.

By Jackie Wallentin
Walnut Creek Windsor Heights

Competition Heats Up on the Court

The Jordan Park Volleyball season brought hundreds of people to Jordan Park Camp each week.

The highly anticipated final Jordan Park Volleyball tournament brought players and spectators to the camp for fierce competition and the annual hog roast on Friday evening.

A total of 92 teams participated in this year’s season, which ran from June 2 to August 8.

"It's extremely encouraging to see teams made up of Community Groups, coworkers, old friends, and new acquaintances build one another up and get to know each other better through the league both on and off the courts," said Amelia Gibson of the Jordan Park Volleyball staff.

Along with Gibson, other Jordan Park Volleyball staff members include Kaden Bronzynski, Adam Nordaker, and Josh Smith.

Congratulations to the champion teams in each league:
  • Division A sixes: Orville Ready Blockers (Marc Vander Velden, David Venass, Jason Eisenga, Kate Kostek, Jamie Ziegler, Ashley Roney)
  • Division B sixes: Digs for Days (Jake Thompson, Liz Miller, Emily Albrecht, Josh Novey, Cheyenne Proudfoot, Caitlin Proudfoot, Niren Shrestha) 
  • Division C sixes: Southies (Jon Schreiner, Jenny Schreiner, Molly Deutmeyer, Alicia Grandstaff, Hollie Butler, Nate Firkins, Jason Ostergaard) 
  • Competitive fours: Checks and Balances (Josh Smith, Greg Altmaier, Beth Discher, Mollie Coffman)

By Jackie Wallentin
Walnut Creek Windsor Heights

Central City Soccer League Celebrates 10th Season

Central City Soccer players and coaches celebrated another successful season at the awards ceremony. The Evelyn Davis League hosted their ceremony on July 27 and the Lovejoy League on August 3. 

College students volunteered as coaches this summer as part of Epicenter summer leadership training.

450 kids. 42 teams. 10 weeks of soccer. Over 90 coaches put in hundreds of hours of volunteer time this summer to organize, schedule, and run the Central City Soccer League.

Both the Evelyn Davis League and the Lovejoy League hosted Central City Soccer awards ceremonies to celebrate the hard work and progress of both the players and coaches. The Evelyn Davis League hosted on July 27 at Walnut Creek Windsor Heights, and the Lovejoy League celebrated on August 3 at Walnut Creek South.

Each player was recognized on stage and received a certificate for their participation in the league. Coaches also prepared a meal for the players and their families as well as fun games to entertain everyone throughout the evening.

"What I know is that a lot of seeds have been planted, and I’m not quite sure how God will use them or grow them, but my prayer is that people will really dwell on the Gospel and think about God," said Tiffany McCarthy of the Central City Soccer staff.

This summer marked the 10th season of Central City Soccer, a league that both promotes character and personal success in every child while sharing about the love of Christ. For the first time, Central City added a second summer league at Lovejoy Elementary on the Southside of Des Moines to allow even more kids to play soccer.

"One thing that really encourages me is to see the same families come back year after year. It makes me think that we are doing something right. God is really using this league to get the Gospel out to families," said McCarthy.

Walnut Creek will host its second fall Central City Soccer League from September 2 through October 18. Registration for the league costs $35 and is open for children ages 5 through 12. Visit www.centralcitysoccer.org/towerpark for more information.

By Jackie Wallentin
Walnut Creek Windsor Heights