In its fifteenth installment at Marlins Park, the Marlins Ayudan Career Workshop Series was as exciting as ever today.
The first workshop of 2014 took place today featuring presentations from Marlins Supervisor of Promotions, Ralph Capdevila, and Radio Broadcaster, Glenn Geffner. Check out the photos below and to learn more about the Marlins Ayudan Career Workshop Series, visit www.marlins.com/maspp .
To follow up on this list, I’d like to share some of the experiences that touched me personally. If you think our young roster is exciting on the field, just spend a few minutes with them off the field. Here are some of the moments from last week in which I realized the depth of character of the young men that make up the Miami Marlins…
Infielder Derek Dietrich was asked to join students on an Art Education Tour of Marlins Park. A few minute into the tour, he literally beading to LEAD it! Dietrich gave our Elementary friends the inside scoop on each location around the field, dugout, clubhouse, etc. He made sure that they knew that they may never be back in a professional sports clubhouse if they didn’t work hard in school. The impact of his efforts was realized at the end of the tour when one 2nd grader from Citrus Grove Elementary told him, “I do my homework every day. I go to school every day. I want to be a baseball player when I grow up, just like you!”
Pitcher Carter Capps joined students from Miami Edison Middle School at the Frost Science Museum. Though he was itching to see the outdoor water wildlife display, he sacrificed his wants to help guide students in the classroom portion of their visit. He helped them learn how different races are similar and different.
Pitcher Jacob Turner motivated his kickball team during a pickup game. He talked his roster of 4th graders up, demanding of them not only that they beat Pitcher Brian Flynn’s team, but that they play by the rules like good sports, and have fun!
Now, if our players’ leadership and humility within the Miami community don’t hook you on these guys, then take a minute to remember, they’re human just like us and everybody likes to have a little fun…
Outfielder Brian Bogusevic taking this game of hoops seriously!
Former Manager Jack McKeon laughing it up with our own Director of Community Outreach and Beyond the Ballpark author, Angela Smith!
Through these stories you may feel a little closer to your Miami Marlins. Stop by Spring Training in Jupiter or visit us on March 31st at Marlins Park to get to know us even better! See you soon.
Isn’t it interesting how whirlwind relationships or experiences can live on to be some of your most meaningful memories of all time?
You have to know what I’m talking about!… Maybe it’s that girl you met on your 5-day cruise 10 years ago, that whenever you really have a great day or see a beautiful sunset you think of her…or maybe it’s your first grade reading buddy who you really only had three reading sessions with, but every time you finish an awesome book or get a piece of good advice you remember them and how things used to be with them.
We have all experienced moments like these. Moments in which the energy of people we’ve met will never be forgotten. Often you find yourself asking, why? Why was I so affected by that person? But in the end, aren’t we all really just happy to experience the “butterflies” that come along with it – that scary, but amazing reminder that we’re alive?
One pair of fans in particular had that butterfly effect on us during the 2013 season – Donna Glendenning and Eloise Card. We met these special ladies through an article in the Miami Herald. The mother-daughter pair who were 91 and 66 years old watched EVERY MARLINS GAME together over the phone! They would connect from Dade to Broward and sometimes Monroe to Broward for periods of 3-5 hours just to support their Marlins…we knew there was something special about these two ladies.
Thanks to the Herald article the Marlins Community Outreach department decided to invite our lady fans out for a once-in-a-lifetime experience at Marlins Park! We had all hoped that this would be a day that the women would never forget. Somehow it turned into a day that we would never forget either. Our new friends were so enthusiastic, excited about life, positive, and sharing their joy. It’s true that positivity is contagious and these ladies infected everyone around them. They were eternally thankful for the opportunity to simply come to a game. But the evening brought more than that. When Donna and Eloise met Jose Fernandez in his own dugout you may have thought the world slowed on its axis just so the sun could continue to shine on Miami for a second longer. The picture below, though one of dozens of Marlins meet and greets, was the highlight of many of our seasons, Donna expressing her elation with her smile from the bench, and Eloise with her embrace.
It is with a heavy heart that I report that this recap of our amazing evening with Donna and Eloise is not just a space-filler. It’s a tribute, as Donna passed away last month. Though I can’t speak for her dear and lifelong friends and family, I can certainly speak for the Marlins family when I say that anytime our phone rings just before a Marlins game, anytime we see Jose excited in the dugout, and even anytime we read a Miami Herald article we get the butterflies. Thanks to Donna and her mother Eloise and their positivity and love that they shared with us, we have simple reminders that we’re alive.
If you’d like to follow Donna’s journey with the Marlins please check out the Miami Herald articles below:
The Marlins Meet Donna and Eloise:http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/08/22/3579607/mom-91-and-daughter-66-watch-every.html
Recap of Donna and Eloise’s Marlins Experience:http://miamiherald.typepad.com/fish_bytes/2013/09/marlins-roll-out-red-carpet-for-two-diehard-fans.html
It was hot – close to 100⁰. And not the nice, at-the-beach, light breeze hot. I’m talking about the heat-waves-radiating-off-the-asphalt-burning-your-skin kind of hot. It was crowded, shoulder-to-shoulder and knee-to-knee. It was loud with blow horns tooting, vendors screaming, and police sirens squealing. This was the scene last weekend as I went out for a walk in my neighborhood, Marlins Park neighborhood, to enjoy a local parade.
I had been excited to see what a Three Kings Parade was all about since growing up I had never heard of, let alone celebrated a Three Kings holiday. But when I arrived I immediately became confused, scared, even flustered at the craziness going on around me. Like I said, it was hot, loud, and crowded…and I didn’t even know why!
Though it took an open mind, and a decent amount of time, I finally came to figure out what all the madness was about. My new community, the Marlins’ new community, extends the holiday season to come together and continue celebrating and rejoicing. I forced myself to talk to strangers on the street, asking them all kinds of questions about this cultural event. I observed interactions and children’s games. Most importantly, I watched the parade….TALK ABOUT A PARADE!! This is the first parade I’ve been to in which candy wasn’t thrown, but I still had a great time! The positive energy was simply radiating from all the participants through the crowds and into a scared and flustered newby like me! When the Three Kings passed me, I really didn’t think it could get much better than that. They let each and every person in the audience see and marvel at their treasure. But I was wrong…
The parade continued to get better. It culminated with Grand Marshall Jose Fernandez. Ok, so I may be a bit partial, but listen to this! Imagine that 100⁰-off-the-asphalt heat, and imagine a grown man walking 13 blocks over the course of HOURS shaking hands, holding babies, and sharing hugs, with every single person in that shoulder-to-shoulder crowd. This man showed exactly how much he cares about all the people who cared enough about him to select him Grand Marshall. And if you were ever confused about the spirit of the season, watching his behavior and interactions during that parade would take away all confusion.
So here’s to you Jose, for showing an newby what Three Kings Day is all about, and for teaching an outsider what it means to be a part of this community.
Since I’m filled with the holiday spirit after this reinvigorating weekend activity, I thought I’d share with you all a few more glimpes of what the Miami Marlins and Marlins Ayudan did to celebrate this holiday season.
The Marlins adopted over 10 families for the holidays. The entire front office contributed to purchasing and delivering gifts to needy families who otherwise would not have been able to celebrate. The familes were selected via the CBS4 Neighbors4Neighbors program and included familes from Miami Children’s Hospital and partner school Bunche Park Elementary.
The Marlins including Andre Dawson helped out a local food distribution at CAMACOL.
Share with us – how did you spread joy during the holidays?
What drives you on a daily basis? What motivates you to get out of bed and do the things you do? For some of you it may be your religious beliefs – a concept you believe in so strongly you are drawn to conviction. For others it may be a career goal that you set for your future. It may be something as simple as a New Year’s Resolution that drives you to improve. Whatever it may be, we all have something compelling us to act. For organizations such as the Marlins, that’s our Mission.
The Marlins Foundation is committed to improving the lives of our youth through education, the arts and baseball, with a special focus on children with special needs.
Oftentimes mission statements serve as a nice page filler and don’t go very far beyond that. An organization may be founded with certain ideas and dreams about what it should ideally look like, and then once it begins operating it simply operates to survive, carrying out basic functions and not to reach ideal or dream state.
In 2010 Marlins Ayudan was formed to help the Marlins Foundation to reach its ideal state. Marlins Ayudan front-office volunteers serve as drivers, as motivation, and as tools to reach our ideal state. This pushing forward, always toward the ultimate goal, occurs on a daily basis. Last week in particular however, I was moved by how during a normal, December week, just days before people leave for the holidays, Marlins Ayudan stepped up and drove harder than ever toward our goal…
Marlins RBI visits MLB Winter Meetings Baseball Showcase
Career Workshop Series visits University of Miami
Career Workshop Series at Marlins Park covering Finance and Marketing
The Transitional Learning Academy of United Cerebral Palsy of Miami visit Marlins Park
Miami High Special Needs Students take Bluefoot Pirate Tour
Last week solidified to me that Marlins Ayudan is a meaningful driver to help the Marlins Foundation reach its ideal state… improving the lives of our youth through education, the arts and baseball, with a special focus on children with special needs.
Share with us! How do you put your mission into action? What drives you to reach your ideal state?