Bozo Ball is a 30+ year tradition here on Bainbridge Island.
Please join us every Sunday at 12PM – rain, shine, or snow – for a friendly pick-up game on the grass fields behind the high school. Be sure to bring a light and dark shirt (no gray!) and simple join whichever team is down a player when you arrive.
Any changes in venue will be noted on the blog, as will special sessions. We usually play an additional session on holidays, and spend the winter months on the high school’s turf field.
Since the fields are rented, Bozo Ball is a “Pay to Play” system. Suggested donations:
- Frequent users: $300 annually
- Less frequent users $3-5 per session
- High school students: Free!
- Field rental
- Annual incorporation expenses
We’re looking forward to meeting you!
Bozo Ball History
In the winter of 2006/2007, we Bozo players caused some community concern when one of our games created a bit of mud in an area within the high school baseball field. We were accused of “vandalizing” the field and tearing down “field closed” signs. Obviously, none of us tore down any signs and no one vandalized anything. Nevertheless, various School District representatives were very excited about the episode and it became important for us to respond as responsible citizens.
John Carney dealt with the School District, fielding several calls from various people there and as a result, a Bozo work party was organized. A number of Bozos did some work to repair the baseball field where we had played and that calmed things down a little. We still felt that we needed to do something to improve our relationship with the School District and to help the School District do some extra maintenance on the fields that we enjoy using. John Carney, at that time, told the School District that we would raise and contribute $1,000 to general field maintenance. We also wanted to raise additional funds and make sure they got used for extra maintenance of “our” fields.
We asked for contributions and you generously contributed a total of $2,771. Thank you all for this strong statement of community and Bozo soccer support!
In a series of meetings with the School District, we tried hard to find a way to use those funds to help the School District do additional maintenance to the fields. Despite those efforts we found there was not a way to make a contribution to the School District that would assure any extra maintenance of the fields. We decided to simply contribute the $1,000 John Carney had pledged to raise for the School District and then review our options to best assure the ongoing 35 year tradition of BozoBall. On January 31, 2008 Nick Daluiso and André Kamber both attended the School Board meeting and presented a check as promised for $1,000 from “BozoBall”. They were able to discuss both our long history and nature of our organization, and emphasized our long term commitment to helping to solve our community’s field problems. They received a very warm welcome and thank you from the school board at the meeting, something we all can share in!
In our discussions with the School District over the past year, we concluded that we Bozo players were in a precarious position regarding allocation of field space and time due to our lack of organization. As a totally unorganized and uninsured group, the School District and Park District could not and would no deal with us in scheduling field usage. We therefore formed a Washington non-profit corporation which is now named “BozoBall”.
The governing body of the new BozoBall organization is made up of Board members who are veteran Bozo players:
- Alex vonReis Crooks – President
- John Carney – Vice President
- Nick Daluiso – Second Vice President
- Ken O’Hare – Treasurer
- André Kamber – Secretary
- Tom O’Hare – Board Member
- Linda Yasutake – Board Member
- Anders vonReis Crooks – Board Member
We have had several meetings with this board since last year where several decisions were made in the interest of BozoBall players. One of the first board decisions was to spend $300 to establish BozoBall with the IRS as a 501 (c) (7) tax exempt organization. With the non profit corporation and tax status in place, John Carney is now able to secure BozoBall liability insurance at a present annual cost of approximately $850.
The combination of our non-profit corporation and liability insurance will now allow us, for the first time, to deal directly with the School District and the Park District to reserve field times for BozoBall. We will need to raise approximately $1,250 per year to cover the annual insurance fees, and potential field usage fees.