More than 150 IBEW 1245 members, families and friends gathered for a day of soccer, piñatas, a cook-off and a delectable BBQ in Fairfield on October 4. (The tournament was originally scheduled for April, but had to be postponed due to rain).
Five teams of twelve players from Placerville, Sacramento, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol and Concord braved the 94-degree heat to play in the 4th annual soccer tournament at Alan Witt Community Park. There were originally eight teams on the roster, but three of the teams were unable to participate due to the high demand for tree trimming crews in Yosemite in the aftermath of the recent fires. Even so, spirits were high as teams gathered and took the field.
After an exciting day of competitive play, the Santa Rosa team faced off against their neighbors from Sebastopol in the championship game. In the end, the Santa Rosa team prevailed, but with so much talent and enthusiasm for the game, there were certainly no losers. The players truly embodied the theme of Amistad, Unidad y Solidaridad (Friendship, Unity and Solidarity).
The event, as always, was a family affair, with many players bringing along their spouses, children and family members to watch and join the fun. As their fathers and uncles streaked across the fields in brightly-colored jerseys, boys and girls of all ages played soccer on a side field, enjoyed the playground swings, and broke two decorative piñatas filled with candies. The players and their families also enjoyed a lunch of barbecued chicken, rice, beans, corn tortillas and home-made salsa.
Four years ago, IBEW 1245 established the soccer tournaments to recognize our tree trimmer members and build camaraderie among the members from the various tree employers. What began as an eight-team tournament has grown to include 16 teams who meet annually — half in the southern part of the union’s jurisdiction, and half in the north. Team captains play an important leadership role by signing up players and preserving the spirit of the day.
“I think [the soccer tournament] is really fun,” said Antonio Jaramillo, captain of the Sacramento team. “It’s a chance to get to know our co-workers who work in different areas. We get to spend time together with our families and make some new friends.”
Thanks to all who made the day a great success, especially our team captains, staff and volunteers.
- Miguel Gonzalez, Concord, Davey Tree
- Juan Rosas, Placerville, Davey Tree
- Antonio Jaramillo, Sacramento, SMUD/Utility Tree
- Chhan Ban, Santa Rosa/Sebastopol, Davey Tree
- Jaime Garcia, Santa Rosa, Davey Tree
- Jose Artiga
- Ron Cochran
- Ralph Armstrong
- Carl Lamers
- Landis Martilla
- Liz McInnis
- Lou Mennel
- Junior Ornelas
- Eileen Purcell
- Abel Sanchez
- Mike Saner
- Hunter Stern
- John Storey