New York Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson has made several visits back to the Lansing and Lynwood area since making it in the big leagues.
While you scan his stats and awards, which include three All-Star appearances, a Silver Slugger Award, the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award, achieving status in the elite 20-20-30-20 club which had not been done since 1911, you realize that his career is one that will go down in the history books. But it’s his behavior off the field that is most impressive to many parents.
Despite being a millionaire, he remains humble and down-to-earth. When he comes back to his hometown, his mother and father, who still reside in the area, are often close by. While he could easily spend that salary on cars and homes and other luxuries all for himself, he donates a lot of it to charitable causes or to help out with funding projects related to his former high school and college and little league. He sets a good example by how he lives his life and whenever kids are listening, he stresses the importance of doing good in school and working hard. He takes being a role model seriously and knows that his words and actions make an impact on those youngsters that look up to him.
Granderson was back in Lansing on Thursday where he spent time warming up with kids and offering playing tips, handing out medallions and meeting little leaguers who are playing at the same complex where he honed his skills as a teenager. Granderson was there before a game between two teams of 10- to 12-year-olds.
He took the opportunity to let the players and fans know how important little league and school were to him and how they contributed to his success today. I know I was one of many adults there who was grateful for those words of encouragement to the kids and his ongoing example of how to be a good human being.
Mark your calendars for Lansing Autumn Fest
It is getting to be a busy time for those planning the second annual Lansing Autumn Fest, which will take place Oct. 11 to 13 in downtown at Fox Pointe and Park Plaza. Food vendors are being lined up. Entertainment is being booked. Marketplace applications are being processed. Plans are being made to add a second stage with family entertainment at Park Plaza. And many, many more details and behind the scenes arrangements are in the works.
I had the honor of being invited to join the board this year of LACE, Lansing Association for Community Events. I’m enjoying seeing everyone work together and put forth so much effort toward this successful festival that drew in visitors of all ages from all over the area on a chilly and rainy weekend. This year we are hoping for nicer weather and a bigger and better experience for those who attend.
I have to give a shout out to those on the board who work so hard to put this event together: Carolyn Scofield, Jo-Ellyn Kelley, Pat Leck, Bob Orzel, Laurie Crosby, Debbie Waitekus, Patty Eidam, Bob Van Ramshorst, Lynn Cartwright, Jeannie McCall and Jake Gourley. We also thank Mike Fish for his contributions during his time as a board member.
If you’d like to get involved in helping with the festival and would like to volunteer, there will be a Lansing Autumn Fest planning meeting at 6 p.m. Wednesday at J.J. Kelley’s, 2455 Bernice Road in Lansing, which you are welcome to attend. You can also get additional information by calling (708) 646-5606 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are interested in having a booth in the Marketplace, you can go to www.lansingautumnfest.org for an application.
Be sure to like Lansing Autumn Fest on Facebook and follow the page for festival updates.