Amsterdam parents, coaches rallying to restore modified sports

Parents and coaches have begun coming up with ideas to raise the funds needed to reinstate modified

Parents and coaches have begun coming up with ideas to raise the funds needed to reinstate modified sports in the Greater Amsterdam School District.

The district’s Board of Education eliminated the $54,000 program as a way of reducing the budget after it was rejected by voters twice.

The board agreed last week to reinstate the program if the community could raise enough money to fund it.

A group of parents met Tuesday night at Crystal Ristorante to organize.

Mary Lynn Rouse, a parent, said the fundraising is a daunting task and one that has to be sustained; however, parents seemed to be more optimistic after Tuesday’s meeting.

“We have a lot of parent support, and that’s the most encouraging thing,” Rouse said.

The group has set up a Facebook group dedicated to their cause called R.A.M.S., which stands for Restore Amsterdam Modified Sports.

The group has already planned a vodka rigatoni dinner for July 20 at Crystal Ristorante. Owner Toni Centi has offered his restaurant to the group and will give all proceeds to the cause.

Tickets will be sold this weekend at ParkFest in Shuttleworth Park for $10.

Plans are also in the works for a golf tournament in August and a monster ball tournament.

The group has until Aug. 21 to raise about $21,000 for fall sports.

Board of Education president Gina DeRossi also attended the meeting to help with ideas on raising money. She said last week she would help with fundraising efforts any way she could.

“When I said I didn’t want to make these cuts, I meant it,” she said.

DeRossi has started an online fundraising campaign through She is trying to raise $1,000 in 26 days. Since Friday, she has received about $560 in donations.

“I know $1,000 isn’t a lot, but it’s a start,” she said.

The relatively small amount of money could be used for things like renting out Amsterdam Municipal Golf Course for a tournament.

Teachers and coaches have shown their support for modified sports as well by meeting on the last day of school to come up with a proposal that would allow for some concessions on both sides to help reinstate the program, according to Athletic Director Robert Noto.

Noto said he thinks the fundraising will still be difficult.

“I think they are going to step on other teams’ toes. They’ll be asking money from the same people. It’s going to be tough, but we’ll see,” Noto said.

Rouse said the parents aren’t letting themselves get too excited about the proposal by the teachers and coaches because they haven’t had any reason to believe that they would be getting help from the district.

Rouse said anyone willing to donate or get involved can contact her at [email protected] or at 842-3922.

Categories: Schenectady County

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