Jay’s Sporting Goods: Good Citizen Award - Clare’s James Wezensky
James Wezensky; A team player everywhere
By: Eric Dion
James Wezensky has had the privilege of playing in the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan State all-star game. He was chosen to play with and against some of the best ballers in the state of Michigan, and bear witness to their skills and match his own against them. He is not only a basketball player, but spent his time in High School playing football, running track, and even taking a shot at golf. When asked if he preferred one over the other, he responded “I don’t have a favorite sport, I just love being active in any way, and I don’t think I’ve played a sport I didn’t enjoy.”
Having played with athletes such as Jackson Gross, Aaron Haynak, Todd Wysong, and Tanner Vida, one could assume that he could relegate sports highlight that would compare with the stories of most sports networks, but his team memories are quite different “ My favorite sports memory of all time is all of the team dinners, bonfires, and team hangouts I’ve ever been a part of. The sense of camaraderie was never greater, especially after we finished a tough week of practice, won a tough game or lost one. Those guys were the type of players who can be joking around and having fun one minute, and focused and ready to work the next.
When not working on his myriad of sports achievements, James has volunteered his time donating and working at blood drives, volunteering to work for Clash for the Cure, he can be seen at Clare Pride day, and has worked bake sales for St, Jude’s and other organizations. When asked about how he felt his sports experiences have helped him with his service to his community, he responded by saying “Sports was a really easy way to learn that putting hard work into something will yield good feelings. It made it really easy to do community service and volunteer work.”
Of course, beyond his dreams of making a game winning three point shot at the buzzer for the win in an NBA Finals game, James would also like to make his mark in the community as well, and his idea holds merit and is worth looking into “I would like to start some type of community farm or giant garden. A place where community members, from the richest to the poorest, can work together and grow healthy food for themselves. This would include the homeless as well, with the idea that if you plant and take care of it, it’s yours.”
When discussing the BCAM All-Star game, James seemed quite happy about the experience, and would probably like to have a repeat showing in his near future.” The experience was great. A competitive game with some of the best players in the state. And the three point and dunk contest were especially fun to watch because I played on the same team as some of the guys in them. It was just an all around fun atmosphere for me and everyone else.”
It is easy to highlight a student-athlete who excels at sports, since they have the stats and highlights to discuss, and James has plenty of his own. However, it is great to discuss the finer features of a young adult who devotes his time to other causes besides that next basket or great play. Not everyone takes time out of their busy schedule to attend a blood drive; James not only attends them, but volunteers there as well. Having once been a member of the National Honors Society, he knows what it means to be a good citizen, and being the local sports hero is not necessarily the first ingredient. For him to make his sports dreams come true, he is going to have to put in a lot of hard work and perseverance, coupled with sweat and dedication. To accomplish his dream of a community garden, he may need to put in as much work, but it would be just as rewarding, if not more than, any sports highlight he could achieve in his life. James may not ever make it to the big leagues in sports, or he could be a superstar, but to a young man with the passion for his community being as strong as his passion for sports, he is already a hero in many people’s eyes for what he has accomplished already, and what he hoes to do could only make him greater.