Jesse Csincsak, the Amherst native turned professional snowboarder, reality star, entertainment reporter and crime fighter is headed home to host a charity dinner in Lorain on Saturday.
The event — which takes place at the Lorain Party Center, 2501 Leavitt Rd., from 5 p.m. until 10 p.m. — is meant to raise money for his not-for-profit organization called JSAK (Just Snowboarding Ambitious Kids) Snowboarding, Inc.
“Most of these kids grew up like I did by coming from a lower middle-class family where there’s not a ton of extra money to do stuff and this is one of the most expensive sports on planet earth,” Csincsak said. “When I grew up, I didn’t have money to travel to competitions, so I moved out to Colorado all on my own and I went the hard route by working as an electrician to fund what I was doing.”
His organization teaches kids how to self promote themselves as an athlete, as well as to raise money from local business owners in their communities by selling snowboarding calendars Csincsak’s organization puts out every year.
For every monetary donation a child or teen receives, the money is placed in to their bank account which is set up through the non-profit organization. The money stays put until the child needs to utilize the funds to help offset the costs associated with advancing their snowboarding careers.
“That kid will then submit a request through our board of directors and say something like ‘I want to go here to either train or compete here or I need to buy more gear’ and we’ll sit down with them and talk about it and give them a check,” Csincsak said.
While most of the kids he is sponsoring this year are a bit more novice in the extreme winter sport, one of his teens is going for the gold, literally.
Nineteen-year-old Alex Tuttle of Stratton, Maine, competed in the junior world competition in Japan last year and is now in the process of qualifying for the U.S. Olympic snowboarding team.
The rest include 9-year-old Jeremy Applestein, of Breckenridge, Colo., 14-year-old Indigo Monk, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., 17-year-old Tara Weldon, of Colorado Springs, Colo., and 19-year-old Rose Raevsky of Grand Junction, Colo.
Since Csincsak established JSAK Snowboarding, Inc. nearly seven years ago, he has sponsored 30 snowboarders in competitions. Thirteen of them have finished in the top five, with many of them moving on to the professional level.
“It’s great to see all of these kids who want to learn and who have the drive to succeed in the sport of snowboarding,” Csincsak said.
Paul Green and his band The Headliners will play at the event, while four of Csincsak’s Bachelor / Bachelorette buddies Brian Westendorf, Paul Brosseau, Richard Mathy and Nikki Kaapke will make an appearance at the charity dinner.
The event will also feature some interesting auction items up for bid.
“I’m friends with Kendra Wilkinson, she’s a playmate from the show ‘The Girls Next Door’ and she has signed her first ever snowboard and anybody can bid on that,” he said. “We’ll also have Cleveland Indians tickets, a Cleveland Browns helmet signed by some of the players and I will be donating an auction item which is the snowboard I used to film America’s Most Wanted and MTV Made part II and I will autograph it in person to whoever wins the item.”
Tickets are $30 per person or $50 per couple that includes dinner and a drink ticket. They also have some $10 tickets that just get you into the event but u don’t get dinner. Csincsak told the News-Times within the first few days after posting this event on his web site, he had already sold 125 tickets.
Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling 440-988-5480 or 440-773-2934 or by going online at www.jsaksnowboarding.com. They will not be sold the night of the event.
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