Matthew Ramos, a Life Scout for Troop 45 in Mineola, knows community footholds are important. This is why he chose to revamp the Mineola Athletic Association baseball field snack stand as part of his Eagle Scout project.
“Most of the the work at the stand is done,” Ramos said. “I think we made a lot of progress. A lot of people have come up to me and my mom saying it looks way better than it did before.”
Ramos emptied the snack stand with the help of 20 fellow scouts, finding food from 2014 strewn about the shelves. The freezers were even rusted out, which has since been replaced.
After cleaning and sanding down the wooden counters and fixing the displays, scouts built food-storage platforms under the counter of the snackstand. Matt replaced the stand’s bulletin board and constructed recycling pales for passersby to use.
“We added a lot of new stuff as well,” Ramos said. “We got all the heavy work done by Opening Day [of MAA baseball].”
Matt’s mother, Linda and Lisa Pusey will run the park’s snackstand this season. The two noticed a run-down structure that needed an upgrade.
“We took a look around to see and saw how much work it would take to get it up and running,” Linda said. “I mentioned it to Matt and he decided to go for it.”
The cost was exponential, but in keeping with Matt’s charitable ways, he held a clothing drive at the snackstand on April 25 that directly benefited Ramos’ project and the MAA.
“Should I raise more money than needed, the extra funds will be given directly to the MAA to help stock the snackstand with items to sell,” Matt said. “I’m collecting clothes throughout the week at the stand. The company that picks up the clothes will write a check for them, but it depends on how much we raise.”
While the clothing drive proved worthwhile, many charitable individuals have turned to Internet fundraisers, like GoFundMe, to reach monetary goals.
GoFundMe was launched online nearly five years ago and has become one of the top crowdfunding or fundraising sites for personal causes and life-events. Hundreds of thousands of people have raised more than $900 million collectively from more than 10 million donors through the GoFundMe website
The GoFundMe campaign would fund most of the repairs to the snackstand. As of press time, the campaign has garnered $905 from 25 donors, leaving a $595 gap; a gap Matthew is sure he’ll close.
“The GoFundMe page helps since people from out of town that can’t run down and drop off clothing,” Linda said. “They’re people who want to contribute and have been extremely generous.”