Storm FC donated soccer funds to Loveland Legacy Foundation, Mile 42 Coffee

By Chuck Gibson

LOVELAND, OH (August 9, 2020) – Loveland Storm F.C. Select Soccer Club made not just one, but two check presentations Friday afternoon, August 7, in Downtown Loveland turning the disappointment of their cancelled spring soccer season into joy for Loveland Legacy Foundation and new start-up Mile 42 Coffee.

Libby Westerman, volunteer with Loveland Storm F.C. presented a check to Steve Max, Board President, Loveland Legacy Foundation while Bruce Jones, President Storm F.C. and Cee Cee Collins looked on Friday, August 7, 2020 (Chuck Gibson)

The first presentation took place on the Scenic Little Miami River Trail near Narrow Path Brewing when Libby Westerman, Storm F.C. volunteer, and Storm F.C. President Bruce Jones presented a check for $300 to Loveland Legacy Foundation Board President Steve Max. It was a unique circumstance finding Max and the Foundation on the receiving end of a check presentation.  They are usually doing the presenting. It showed him Loveland Storm F.C. and LYSA understand the value of what the foundation and others are doing in the community.

“There is a real need at this time,” said Max. “It’s a way for them to make a meaningful contribution to those in need which fits perfectly into our mission statement.”

The Loveland Legacy Foundation is a nonprofit organization created out of the generosity of others with a purpose to improve the community of Loveland. Brian Garry, Board Vice-president and board member Cee Cee Collins, President, LMRCA were also on hand for the check presentation on behalf of the Loveland Legacy Foundation. Storm F.C. coach Jessica Burnigrud with her daughter and Amy Smith with her daughter Emily represented the soccer club in the check presentation.

“These are tough times for all charities,” said Garry. “For an organization like Storm F.C. to be thinking about, and have the kids engage, and be able to raise some money they know will go to help others in the community, it’s a great thing.”



The small group walked over to Mile 42 Coffee for the presentation of a check to owner Katie Butler. Katie is the daughter of Jackie and Loveland City Councilman Tim Butler. Both were on hand when Katie accepted the check from members of Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club. 

Again, it was a most unique circumstance as Katie graciously accepted the check on behalf of her new venture Mile 42 Coffee. It was special because her commitment to turn around and give it back to support Loveland School teachers.

Katie Butler and her mom Jackie Butler with the check in front of Mile 42 Coffee (Chuck Gibson)

“It’s awesome, it’s the second time someone has done this for us,” said Katie. The first time, it was a local church giving to them. “We gave back to health care workers. Now it’s the soccer team, the Loveland youth soccer for teachers.”

For Butler and Mile 42 Coffee, it is more than a slogan when they say ‘Creating Community through Coffee.’  She’s excited to see the community come together, to embrace community, and to help them give back to the community. The pandemic situation has created some difficult times for a lot of businesses like hers, but she had her reasons for choosing to give back to the teachers.

 “They’ve had a tough year,” Butler said. “I think everyone has, but they had a lot put on their shoulders. At the beginning of all this, it was about health care workers and now the teachers are taking on a lot of this and trying to help families navigate what they’re going to do – whatever is right for them. This is a way to take a little stress off them.”

The whole gang during the check presentation by Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club memebers l-r Caroline Smith, Emily Buringrud, Amy Smith and in back Jessica Burnigrud; with Katie, Jackie, & Tim Butler in back and Libby Westerman far right. (Chuck Gibson) 

And so, a story which began with the sadness and sorrow of a lost soccer season for Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club youth due to the coronavirus Covid-19, does not end there. Instead they turn it into a great example of paying it forward for their community. This is not an isolated incident for the Loveland Youth Soccer Association and Loveland Storm F.C. Select Soccer Club. In fact, this is just one way they live out their mission of “Building Life Skills”-“Growing Players”- “Having Fun” and “Giving Back” as Loveland Storm F.C. just as printed on the shirts worn by coaches and members of the team during the check presentation Friday. That is actually where the real story begins for the soccer club and organization President Bruce Jones.  

These Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Cub members delivered on their promise right off the back of their shirts (Chuck Gibson

When the spring soccer season was cancelled, the club made what many would agree was a difficult decision to return over $100,000 in fees to players/families despite costs for field upkeep and equipment. That’s when Libby Westerman received an email asking if anyone wanted to help with fundraising. She’s had experience volunteering in the past and said yes.

 “We were trying to think of a way to raise money without directly asking people for money,” said Westerman. She thought about involving community in a way that would raise money, but also benefit them through exercise. “It was all about a 5K that’s virtual.”

Libby Westerman volunteered with Strom F. C. and helped create the June 5K. (Chuck Gibson)

Even then, they helped the community. Westerman said they worked with R.P. Diamond to provide the shirts. The local business helped them make a little money on the shirts while they in-turn helped R.P. Diamond make a little during the down time of the pandemic.

“It teaches the kids to work toward a goal in a healthy competitive way,” Westerman said. “We thought we needed some help, but other people in the community needed help because of Covid-19. Since we are a Loveland Storm team, they wanted to give back to the Loveland community.”

This was a lesson for the kids in how you help develop and grow a community from within the community. In the words of Bruce Jones, “We are outcome aware, but purpose driven.” It is a motto he learned from a college soccer program, but applies to the LYSA and Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club.

It is the purpose which drove the late June 5K and resulted in the outcome of giving back to the community of Loveland by several youth soccer players. It is more than soccer. It is even more than that, Loveland Legacy will be using the money to help others in the community and Mile 42 Coffee is using it to help teachers.

“That’s amazing,” said Westerman. “I am really happy. The teachers really need it. Yes.”

Click here for more about Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club

Click here for more about Loveland Legacy Foundation

Click here for more about Mile 42 Coffee

It was all about giving back and smiling faces during the check presentation from Loveland Storm F.C. Soccer Club Friday, August 7, 2020 (Chuck Gibson)