Zeigler Auto Group, a long-time supporter of the Sherman Lake YMCA, has stepped up once again in support of the organization by donating a new ATV through Zeigler Motorsports. The new Kawasaki Mule Side x Side is a welcome addition to the center as a safe and reliable way for campers and staff to navigate Sherman Lake YMCA's 360-acre property.
Sherman Lake, Mich. (July 14, 2021) -- Zeigler Auto Group recently donated a new Kawasaki Mule to the local Sherman Lake YMCA through Zeigler Motorsports. Although the Sherman Lake YMCA has a number of trucks and golf carts to help employees, volunteers and campers get around, the new Kawasaki Mule has made it easier to navigate the center's massive 360-acre property, which includes a 55,000-square-foot recreation center.
"We are a very unique YMCA. We are the only YMCA in the nation that has its campground on the same property as its traditional YMCA facility," said Zach Klipsch, director of the Sherman Lake YMCA.
With the organization serving around 250 kids on site a day, not only is it safer for camper pickups and drop-offs, it is also more efficient when it comes to making repairs and getting around during emergencies.
"It's been a jack of all trades for us. In fact, I think it is the single most-used item we've gotten from our last capital campaign so far. We use it that much," said Klipsch.
The capital endowment campaign was started pre-pandemic, but took a big hit because of the state-wide shutdowns. Roughly from March to September, during these shutdowns, they partnered with the Kalamazoo YMCA to prepare over 100,000 meals for those in need. They targeted communities that had food insecurity and relied on food lunches as a means to eat.
It was also during the pandemic that the organization decided they needed an ATV. They knew that it would help to have one once campers started to come back and activity picked back up. It was then that Klipsch decided to reach out to Aaron Zeigler, president and owner of Zeigler Auto Group and Zeigler Motorsports, to ask for a discount on a new ATV. To his surprise Aaron, a long-time personal supporter of the Sherman Lake YMCA, offered to donate the vehicle to the YMCA instead.
But this isn't the first time that Zeigler has shown the organization support, Zeigler is regularly a title sponsor for a number of events at the Sherman Lake YMCA. Among many others, the two biggest events are the Shermanator Triathlon and the Success for Every Child Gala.
The Shermanator Triathlon is a short distance triathlon for 200-220 people that takes place every August. The event's main goal is to raise money to provide scholarships to the Y for families. Zeigler has been a title sponsor for this event for over 10 years, and although the organization is not planning on hosting one this year, they plan on being back on schedule for 2022.
The Success for Every Child Gala, which usually takes place on the third or fourth Friday of June, is a gala that helps raise money to send kids to camp who otherwise wouldn't be able to go. The event features a sit down dinner for about 200 people with a silent and live auction.
The Sherman Lake YMCA serves 20,000 people and gives around $150,000 to $200,000 in scholarships every year with the support of donors like Zeigler. These scholarships make it possible for kids from other districts without resources to access everything the YMCA has to offer. In fact, the organization hosts around 5,000 children from 50 different schools for about 3 days and 2 nights during the school year. During this time, kids are given the opportunity to participate in different activities that help with developmental and leadership skills.
Sherman Lake YMCA serves over 20,000 people each year through programs (Day, Resident, and Teen Leadership Summer Camps, Integrated Education, YMCA Health Well Being Memberships, and Conferences, Trainings, & Retreats) that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.
The Integrated (Character Education) program is an award winning school camp program that incorporates a deep partnership with schools including the professional development of teachers in teaching life skills.
The Sherman Lake YMCA is a totally accessible facility and organization that believes in "Success for Every Child".
Facilities include a Center for Integrated (Character) Education, a large conference dining hall, three villages, a farm and horse riding facilities, a mile of shoreline on Sherman Lake, and a one of a kind indoor recreation center serving the surrounding local communities as a YMCA wellness membership facility.
The Sherman Lake YMCA has three areas of focus, Youth Development, Healthy Living, and Social Responsibility. The primary program goal is building strong, resilient youth and families using the core values of Honesty, Caring, Respect and Responsibility.
Zeigler Automotive Group is one of the largest privately-owned dealer groups in the U.S. with 76 automotive franchises across 31 locations in Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. Vehicle brands represented include all of the domestic and the majority of the imported manufacturers.
Besides its extensive automotive portfolio, the organization owns and operates Zeigler Motorsports, an 85,000-square-foot motorsports dealership and action park, offering 15 different powersports brands, plus its own onsite restaurant: Trak Houz Bar & Grill. Additionally, Zeigler Motorsports houses the Elevate Leadership & Team Building Academy, an executive training company.
The Kalamazoo-based dealer group also owns and operates Zeigler Pre-Owned of Chicago, a Carquest Auto Parts store, three Byrider franchises, three finance companies, several insurance firms, and a leasing firm.
Founded in 1975, the organization employs over 1,800 people with annual sales of $1.7 billion, ranking among the top 1% of automotive dealers in the nation. The family-owned and operated company is well known for its commitment to both customer service and employee satisfaction. Zeigler is regularly recognized as one of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work for in the Nation, also earning similar accolades in Chicago and Michigan.
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