Lincoln-Way High Schools host Community Night
Tuesday, August 23, 2016

On Friday, August 19, the talent of hundreds of Lincoln-Way students was displayed during Community Night, which was hosted by each of the District 210 high schools. Families, friends, supporters, and community members attended each stadium where fall athletic and music programs were highlighted. In lieu of gate admission, high schools asked those in attendance to donate canned goods that were distributed to local food pantries.

Lincoln-Way Central kicked off the night with “Kid Zone” activities. Varsity players signed autographs and applied temporary tattoos for children in attendance. Shortly after, JROTC presented the colors and the Lincoln-Way Central music department sang the National Anthem. Throughout the night there were performances by Poms, Cheerleading, Pep Band, and Football.

Athletic Director Matt Lyke welcomed those in attendance from the field and expressed pride in his athletes. “The Athletic Department plays a unique role in joining the school and community. Whether we are parents, teachers, staff or simply Knights supporters, we are proud of our students as they dedicate themselves to their chosen athletic endeavors.”

Children who participated in youth camp performed with the Rhythm Knights, showcasing the dance skills that they had practiced with Poms during the previous week. Varsity Knight Football held their annual Red vs. Black scrimmage, giving the crowd a preview of the upcoming season.

Coach Jeremy Cordell said, “Winning is done when the fans are not around--behind the scenes. I am very proud of their efforts and looking forward to watching them maximize their potential. I am most excited for our players and for the Friday Night Lights. They have earned everything up to this point and I know they will continue to raise the bar.”

At Lincoln-Way East, the Griffins blended Community Night traditions from East with traditions from Lincoln-Way North. The presentation of athletes from all sports was well-received by those in attendance. Coaches and varsity football players wore t-shirts branded with both school mascots to show unity among all. The words “Heart of the Phoenix, Strength of the Griffin” were printed on the shirts, which were generously provided by the Lincoln-Way North Athletic Boosters.

Athletic Director Mark Vander Kooi commented, “It was great to see all of our fall athletes on the stadium and be recognized for all the effort, time and energy they have put in to be successful student-athletes. This was the first time we did this at East, and it was a tremendous night.”

The event included performances by the Marching Band, Drum Line, Poms, and Cheerleading. Volleyball, Soccer, and Football scrimmaged on the field throughout the night, and a Poms Kiddie Camp performance took place as well. The local children performed a choreographed routine alongside the Poms team after spending a week practicing with the high schoolers. At the end of the night, Varsity Football participated in the 10th annual Ron Tomczak Black 'n Blue Scrimmage.

Coach Rob Zvonar said, “"The Lincoln-Way East Community Night was a very positive experience in which old traditions were upheld and new traditions were introduced. From the parade of Fall Sports teams through the 10th Annual Ron Tomczak memorial football scrimmage, the night was a great success. We were honored to be able to keep Coach Tomczak's legacy alive and we are grateful for the support of our amazing community.”

At West's Community Night, the Marching Warriors opened with the National Anthem and fight song.

Lincoln-Way West's Athletic Director Ted Robbins welcomed supporters with excitement for the season. “We would like to welcome all of our new parents, students, and fans to the Warrior Nation as we get ready for another great year on and off the field. The community support, school spirit, and positive feedback the students receive from participating in interscholastic competition will make memories that last a lifetime.”

Performances at West’s Community Night included Poms, who were joined by young Warrior Dance Clinic participants. A sea of orange filled the field as they debuted their choreography to “Take on the World.” After a performance by the cheerleaders, fall athletic teams were announced, followed by soccer and football scrimmages.

Coach Dave Ernst said, “We’re always looking forward to the season, but we’re looking forward to this year more than ever because we have a great group of young men that I enjoy being around every day. The new players coming over have been great additions to our program, and most of the guys already knew each other. We are looking forward to competing together this weekend.”