Even if North Penn School District took a contracted coach away from North Penn Lacrosse — leaving them with five coaches, three of which are contracted — the spring high school sports program continues to flourish, all for the players.
Saturday at McDonald's at Montgomery Commons Shopping Center on Welsh Road in Montgomery Township saw the lacrosse team washing cars and accepting donations to further the success of the team.
"What we're doing is a fundraiser to maintain our staff and keep everybody intact," said Coach Rick Smith. "We fundraise for the program itself."
Many of the funds raised at the three to four fundraising events throughout the year go toward equipment, offsetting tournament fees, fall and winter league fees, uniforms, food after games, and gifts for the team's season-end banquet.
"The reality is, everything goes back to the kids," said Smith. "It's not just to supplement the coaches."
The lacrosse program has been established in the district for about 15 years, according to Smith, started by David Burnett.
Smith said there are about 50 players, comprising varsity and junior varsity, spanning ninth to 12th grades.
Most of the players — and some parents — were out Saturday, donned in blue, sudsy and soaking wet from the hoses and making peoples' cars shine. The water was provided courtesy of McDonald's owner Chris Chong.
"It's everyone combining efforts," said Smith. "Today, everyone is chipping in and helping out."
Donations neared several hundred when the four-hour event wrapped up at 2 p.m. All in all, the players and parents washed between 50 to 70 cars.
"People have been very generous with their donations," Smith said.
Smith emphasized how each player is committed to do an outstanding job for the team.
"We get money for the kids and for the program, and give back to them," he said.
Lacrosse player David Selverian, a senior at North Penn, said he and his teammates have been working hard to make the season even better than last year.
"We continue to give back by working hard," he said. "It makes it easier for everyone financially."
Matt McConaghy, a junior at North Penn, has been playing lacrosse since the third grade. He loves the camaraderie of the lacrosse team.
"These fundraisers help us by getting equipment and uniforms," he said. "It all helps the team play well."
Selverian added that the fundraisers make it easier for the players to do what they want for the team.
Team parent Michelle Hill, of Upper Gwynedd, has a son who is a freshman at the high school.
"This is not only a fundraising event, but a team building event," Hill said. "It welcomes families into the program."
Hill said she has five children and has seen them "go through every sport at North Penn."
"What Rick, Donna McConaghy, and Dave have done for the team is great," Hill said.
She said the fundraisers also help underprivileged students who want to play lacrosse and their families take part in the game.
"It's about community building and bringing awareness of the program. It's not as well known as other area programs," Hill said. "The parents have done a remarkable job in helping create this program in the area."