here - Bo Tkach Memorial



here - Bo Tkach Memorial
Continue to showcase the soccer
talents of the Jim Thorpe, Lehighton,
Panther Valley, and Towamensing Soccer
Clubs at Beltzville State Park Soccer
Continue to form partnerships and
relationships between clubs and
communities all the while developing our
soccer players to their fullest athletic
educational and social potential.
- Please read attached
Times News Article
regarding Jim Tkack.
Continue to have players, coaches,
and dedicated family soccer enthusiasts
from across Carbon County contribute in
the fight against childhood mental
illness which affects too many!
Carbon County Cup will help promote
and bring awareness of childhood and
adolescent mental health needs through
a collaboration with the Bo Tkach
Memorial Foundation.
NEW EVENT FOR 2012 CUP!!!!!!
Health and Safety Fair
- Sponsored by both the S.S. Palmer and
Towamensing Elementary PTO's, the event
- Please read attached Times
regarding Health and Safety of children. This
News Article regarding this
community event is open to the general public,
community event
and not just those who live in the Palmerton
Area School District.
The Carbon County Soccer Tournament
needs your generous support to continue this
exciting youth community event. Your
sponsorship dollars will help defer costs
associated with facilitating this huge county wide
soccer extravaganza. ALL surplus
sponsorship/donation money will be donated to
the Bo Tkack Memorial Foundation. Last year,
The Cup donated $1000.00 dollars! An estimated
600 players competing on 53 teams and their vast
family and friends that are supporters
will allow your company or organization to be
embedded in an estimated 2000 soccer
enthusiasts of different age groups. Additionally
your company will gain attention through press
releases and news coverage of our event.
Tournament Naming Rights Sponsorship Package….$2,500.00
Tournament will be named after your company or organization
Welcome banners will be placed at entrance/exists of fields that thanks your company or
organization for their valued sponsorship.
4 -divisional banners that will have your company or organization placed on the top and center.
An estimated 12 field signs will be placed to identify the field locations for the games. Your
company or organization’s name will be placed on top and center of all field signs.
An estimated 20 soccer goal signs will be utilized for the tournament. Your company or
organization’s name/logo will be placed on all 20 soccer goal signs
Awards ceremony will be conducted with the trophy presented to the 4 winning teams. Your
organization will be asked to participate in the ceremony. All newspaper pictures and television
footage will be conducted with the trophy.
Divisional Sponsorship Packages…………………………$1,000.00
Your company or organization will have the opportunity to sponsor one of the four divisions of
the tournament (U6, U8, U10 or U12)
Example: Name of Company or Organization U-8 Division
The divisional banner will have your company or organization placed on the banner.
Awards ceremony will be conducted underneath each banner. All newspaper pictures and
television footage will be conducted in front of these banners.
An estimated 5 field signs will be placed to identify the field locations for the games. Your
company or organization’s name/logo will be placed on all field signs for your division.
An estimated 10 soccer goal signs will be placed in your division. Your company or
organization’s name/logo will be placed on all soccer goal signs for your division.
Field Sponsorship Packages…………………………………..$300.00
Your company or organization will have the opportunity to sponsor one of the estimated 10
fields that will have multiple games played on it during the tournament.
Example: Name of Company or Organization Field
The divisional banner will have your company or organization placed on the divisional banner
Awards ceremony will be conducted underneath each banner. All newspaper pictures and
television footage will be conducted in front of these banners
Your company or organization’s name will be placed on your field sign.
Soccer Goal Sponsorship Packages……………………..$150.00
Your company or organization will have the opportunity to sponsor one of the estimated 20
soccer goals on the 10 fields that will have multiple games played on it during the tournament.
Example: Name of Your Company or Organization’s Soccer Goal
Name of Your Company/Organization’s
Soccer Goal
The 2nd Annual Carbon County Soccer Tournament looks
forward to your sponsorship and patronage.
If you have any comments, questions, or concerns about
your area soccer club, please contact the following people:
Club Representative:
Jeff Kattner
[email protected]
Joe Galvin
[email protected]
JD Light
[email protected]
Gil Perloni
[email protected]
Please complete the sponsorship information below.
All completed forms and checks should be mailed to: Mr. Brian Morgan, 376
Columbia Ave, Palmerton PA 18071
All checks should be made out to: Towamensing Soccer Club
Please feel free to contact Mr. Brian Morgan at (610) 349-2239 or [email protected]
with any questions, comments, or concerns.
Phone Number:
E-Mail Address:
Web-site Address:
Contact Person:
Sponsorship Level/
Tournament Naming Rights
Divisional Sponsor
Field Sponsor
Goal Sponsor
 Please have any Company or Organization Logo e-mailed to Mr.
Brian Morgan at: [email protected]
 All logos/pictures must be jpegs to be uploaded onto our website.
Saturday, October 1, 2011
Dear Editor:
I would like to take this time to thank numerous Carbon County businesses that elected to
sponsor the 1st Annual Carbon County Soccer Cup. This charitable tournament that will
take place on Saturday, November 5, 2011 will help promote and bring awareness of
childhood and adolescent mental health needs through a collaboration with the Bo Tkach
Memorial Foundation.
The Cup will have all four Carbon County Soccer Clubs competing to determine the best
U6, U8, U10, and U12 teams in the county. In all, an estimated 500 recreational soccer
players will compete in this tournament.
Even in today's down economy a plethora of local companies were able to make sure that
this tournament could be started. These altruistic companies include; Divisional Sponsors
1st National Bank of Palmerton and Claude's Creamery. Field Sponsors include; Claude's
Creamery, Tumble w/ Denise, Tim Williams State Farm, Country Junction, Dynamite
Woodworking, Wentz Auto Care, PJ Whelihans at Platz, Computer Patrol, Dr. Ronald
Sherry (DDS), and Rep Heffley, and Sen. Argall. Goal sponsors include; FJ Lesher
Construction, RF Ohl Fuel and Oil, Mortgage Bank America, One Ten Tavern, DeSousa
Oil, Hunter Meckes Memorial Soccer Tournament, and Carbon United.
Thank you, to all the above companies and organizations in Carbon County. Due to your
generosity, the Carbon County Cup will be one of the largest recreational soccer
tournaments in Eastern Pennsylvania. Hopefully with additional support, this tournament
will become an annual event that helps raise money for the Bo Tkach Foundation, and
provide an outlet for competitive recreational soccer.
Carbon County Cup Board Member
Brian Morgan
Friday, November 4, 2011
Carbon County Soccer Cup tournament at Beltzville on Saturday
By ANDY STEINMETZ [email protected]
Over the years, there have been plenty of youth soccer tournaments conducted throughout
the TIMES NEWS coverage area. However, there might have never been a tournament
like the inaugural Carbon County Soccer Cup tournament that will be held at the
Beltzville State Park this Saturday.
Typically these types of soccer tournaments tend to take place at the end of regular
season, they consist of players and teams from just that sole area, and the athletes that are
"all-stars" from that particular league.
However, this tourney breaks away from that mold by combining the teams from the
youth soccer programs of Lehighton, Jim Thorpe, Panther Valley and Towamensing
Soccer Clubs. The expected number of participants should get near around six hundred
players and obviously took a lot of time, preparation and planning.
Brian Morgan, one of the tournament directors, recently spoke about the amount of time
that has been put into this event.
"The cooperation so far has been excellent," Morgan said. "We have been getting
together for the past several months to talk about sponsorships, rules, division set ups and
things like that. It has continued to be a work in progress. But every club has kind of
'checked their egos at the door,' and since it's for the kids, it seems to be a really good
idea that hopefully we can continue to do in future years."
On Saturday morning, play will begin at 9 a.m. at Beltzville with a pool play format. "We
have an estimated 53 teams included from the four different leagues," Morgan said. "So
roughly six hundred kids will be playing in this tournament, which I think is incredible."
The tournament will consist of four divisions: U-6, U-8, U-10 and U-12. It is a co-ed
Based on their record in pool play, the top teams will advance to the playoff round where
there will be a four-team, single-elimination tournament in each division.
The pool play portion of the tournament is projected to be completed around noon time.
The playoff round should go from approximately 12:30-2 p.m. with the awards ceremony
to follow.
With so many athletes playing on that day, there is expected to be plenty of people in
"Beltzville has estimated that about one thousand to fifteen hundred people will be there,"
Morgan stated. "We'd like to thank the state park for allowing us to hold the tournament
there. They're wonderful up there and they're all about the kids."
Other notable people that have contributed to the potential success of the day are Gil
Peroni, the President of the Towamensing Soccer Club, JD Light, the President of
Lehighton Soccer, Joe Galvin, the President of Jim Thorpe Soccer, and Jeff Kattner, a
Board Member of the Panther Valley Soccer Club.
"Everyone seems to be really cooperative and supportive," Morgan commended.
"Without the approval and funding of these groups, none of this would be possible. Also,
all of the parents of the players need to be thanked, as well. We're adding a week onto the
end of everyone's season, so they are volunteering their time and efforts and it is greatly
Another familiar charity, the Bo Tkach Memorial Foundation, is also playing a part in the
development of the event.
"We're trying to bring about awareness of child and adolescent mental illnesses," Morgan
said. "Any money that is not used will all be donated to that foundation."
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Youngsters learn about topics no one wants to talk about
By LINDA KOEHLER [email protected]
Hundreds of kids at Pleasant Valley Intermediate School listened enthralled as Jim Tkach
told them about his son, Bo Tkach, and all his accomplishments in school and in sports.
Travis Bo Tkach, a 2001 Northern Lehigh High School graduate, loved the game of
football. He was a two-time first team All State football player, a member of the 1998
Colonial League championship team, quarterbacked the first ever District 11
championship team at Northern Lehigh and played in the first Pennsylvania East-West
All Star Game. Bo was named to ESPNs Academic High School Football All-American
team in 2000-2001. He was also a two-time District 11 javelin champion. In 2001, he was
named Most Valuable Male Athlete of Northern Lehigh. He was also the school's
representative of the Best of the Best.
Bo accepted a football scholarship to the University of Delaware, transferred to Lehigh
University and later to Wilkes University. He graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2007, as a
member of Delta Mu Delta, with a degree in business and marketing.
Bo worked with young people in the Lehigh Valley, helping them develop speed and
agility. He volunteered as a guest speaker at youth clinics and ran speed and explosion
seminars for Southern Columbia, Marian Catholic, Northern Lehigh, Tamaqua,
Palmerton and Lehighton High Schools.
Bo's proud dad told the PVI students, "In his short life, Bo had more accomplishments
than some of us will have in a lifetime."
But for all of those bright shining moments in his life, Bo dealt with dark demons and
Tkach talked about those too.
He explained that his son was diagnosed with OCD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and
struggled with depression.
OCD is an anxiety disorder characterized by unreasonable thoughts and fears
(obsessions) that lead you to do repetitive behaviors (compulsions), such as frequently
washing your hands, or checking to see if the door is locked again and again, even though
you know it is locked. You are aware that your thoughts are irrational, yet you are unable
to control them.
"When he was young, Bo felt he had germs that would kill his classmates and friends.
We knew there was something really wrong when he was about eight years old. He came
to breakfast one morning before school and his mother noticed his pants were really tight.
He had on six pairs of underwear because he was so afraid his germs would escape and
kill his classmates."
His mother, Sandi, a registered nurse, knew there was a problem. They sought help and
through medications and counseling, thought Bo was handling it.
Tkach said that like many mental illnesses, they disrupted Bo's life in ways that others
did not see.
There was a collective gasp of dismay from the students when Jim Tkach told them his
beautiful, talented and wonderful son, Bo Tkach, committed suicide in July 2007.
"I'm here today to teach you about suicide. I want to convince you to be a giver, a
helper," he told them.
For the rest of the assembly at PVI, Jim Tkach, who was a former coach for the
Palmerton and Northern Lehigh School Districts and Lehigh University, talked to the
attentive and respectful fifth and sixth graders about three major topics that no one likes
to talk about ... bullying, mental disorders and suicide. After the death of his son, he, his
wife, and their other two children, daughter, Tristan and son Tyler, wanted to do
something to help prevent the same thing from happening to other young people.
That's how the Bo Tkach Foundation, through the University of Michigan Depression
Center, was born, with the motto of "Under every helmet and hat is a child who needs
us." Its mission is "To create awareness for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and other
mental health issues while providing essential funding for youth athletic programs,
scholarships and otherwise inaccessible individual mental health screening and
"Suicide is the third leading cause of death of individuals in the 15-24 years old range,"
he related that stark fact.
The Foundation promotes positive mental health for students in the area through youth
athletics, public awareness and financial assistance, benefiting 1,000 or more students a
He told the audience that from February 2011 to February 2012, the Foundation spent
$23,000 providing scholarship awards to deserving student athletes, funding for many
youth athletic programs in the area and financial assistance to students who would not
otherwise have access to mental health screening and treatment. It supports mental health
awareness and works toward educating parents to recognize the potential warning signs
and symptoms of mental disorders and depression.
He said that mental disorders, depression and suicide are subjects so many people don't
want to talk about and that there are schools in Delaware, where he now lives, that won't
even invite him to come talk about it.
"Do you know that 100 kids a week commit suicide?" he asked.
He doesn't want another family to have to say good-bye to a son or a daughter, a brother,
a sister because of a suicide. That's why he tells Bo's story to anyone who will listen.
"I want to convince you to be givers and helpers. I want you to be a friend. I want to
encourage relationships that establishes trust. I want you to be aware and recognize
changes in your friends. Are they stressed, aren't they sleeping, are they depressed, are
there substance abuse issues? Parents, teachers, fellow athletes, friends should all be
aware of changes. Also, be accountable for what you do. Don't blame anyone else for
your actions," he said.
He talked about the Delta Force mentality of "No one gets left behind."
"If you have a friend, are you going to leave them behind when the going gets tough? Or
are you going to stick with them, help them? That's what I want you to take with you
when you leave here today. I want you to want to help others. Do something nice without
telling anyone you did it."
After his son's death, friends of Bo told Tkach that when Bo was at Wilkes University, he
was walking by on a very cold winter's night and found a homeless man. He picked him
up, put him on a bus and paid for him to ride it all night long so he could stay warm.
A girl called Tkach and told him that Bo had learned she was dying from cancer and he
called her every week to cheer her up.
"We didn't know any of these things until after he was gone. Despite his own troubles, he
looked out for others."
He gave examples of stories in the news about the meanness and unkindness of others.
One was of a girl in Florida who was extremely allergic to peanuts. Her parents asked her
classmates to wash their mouths out and their hands after they ate to help with their
daughter's safety. The parents of the classmates protested that it was interfering with their
children's day and were unwilling to help.
"Why couldn't they do that for her?" he wondered aloud.
"My challenge to you and to the teachers ... it's not too late to change habits and be kind
to others."
He ended the program with "Despite all the bad things that happened to our son, we have
been very blessed with many good things that he did."
As the students were dismissed to go back to classes, many that were moved by Tkach's
words came up to him and thanked him and expressed their appreciation for the message
he shared.
Tkach believes if he and the Foundation are able to save one life because of that message,
Bo's story is worth telling over and over.
Friday, November 4, 2011
Health and Safety Fair scheduled in Palmerton
By TERRY AHNER [email protected]
A healthy and vibrant community can make for quite an attractive combination.
Which is all the more reason why families should plan to attend the second annual Health
& Safety Fair from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the S.S. Palmer Elementary School.
Sponsored by both the S.S. Palmer and Towamensing Elementary PTO's, the event
strives to raise community awareness, said Towamensing PTO member Jamie Drake,
who also serves as event co-chair.
"It's about community awareness," Drake said. "The reason we're having this on a
Saturday is so that people can come out as a family, because a lot of the things we have
are interactive."
Among the free services that will be offered include stroke screenings by Good Shepherd
Rehabilitation; Zumba Class with Julie Stroup from noon-1 p.m., Stranger Danger
presentation; "No Texting" car magnets courtesy of Lehigh Valley Hospital Trauma
Team; Child ID's with Fingerprinting (Baltimore Life Insurance); a book swap; "Coconut
Crusher" demo and booster seat; Law updates by Children's Team of Carbon County;
Carbon County's Safety Team; Miller Keystone Blood Center; as well as a Chinese
Auction and bake sale.
Drake said the event is open to the general public, and not just those who live in the
Palmerton Area School District.
"We're doing this as a community service," she said. "It's a great thing to bring kids out
to, because people don't have to spend money."

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