Volley for Mitchell turns 5

Four additional courts at NRMS to be added to accommodate record participation

Volley for Mitchell 4-on-4 Charity Volleyball Tournament turns 5 in 2011 and is receiving a birthday present from AT&T. Tournament organizers recently announced that the 2011 event will be underwritten by a generous gift from AT&T in the amount of $ 3,500.

“When we sat around the bonfire in my backyard five years ago, I would have never dreamed that I’d be standing here receiving such a generous contribution,” Jeff Hartnagel commented. “It just goes to show you the commitment that businesses such as AT&T have for the greater good of our community.”

In the four years since three friends, Hartnagel, Peter MacGregor and Bill Jackson, sat around that bonfire, Volley for Mitchell, a fundraiser named for Rockford’s Mitchell Peterson who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, has raised over $ 30,000 for the Parent Project in its ongoing battle against Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). DMD is the most devastating of the dystrophies diagnosed during childhood. To date there is no cure!

The 2011 Volley for Mitchell tournament will once again be headquartered at the Score Restaurant & Sports Bar, 5301 Northland Dr. NE, which has donated the use of their courts since 2008.

“The Score has been awesome, and playing on their courts is definitely a big draw for our participants,” said MacGregor. “Having the event at this venue is definitely a big factor in our success.”

Saturday, July 30 is the date of the 2011 Volley for Mitchell tournament. Teams participating will be playing on the courts at the Score Restaurant & Sports Bar and beginning this year on the newly developed sand volleyball field located at North Rockford Middle School (NRMS), courtesy of Rockford Public Schools and the entire Rockford community.

“These courts were built for the benefit of the community with funds from the 2008 recreation millage. I can’t think of a better event to be hosted on these new fields,” said Dr. Michael Shibler, superintendent of Rockford Public Schools.

Details and an entry form can be obtained by contacting MacGregor, co-director of Volley for Mitchell, at (616) 866-3364 or e-mail at clmacgregor@aol.com or by going online to www.volleyformitchell.org.

“We had over 150 participants last year. With four more courts, we are expecting over 200 this year, so teams should get their entry in early,” said MacGregor.

When asked if another five years of playing four-on-four coed volleyball for charity in the waning, hot, steamy days of summer could be expected, Hartnagel simply smiled and uttered, “You betcha!”

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