20 Questions with Evan Strand

From sunny California, Evan Strand is here to share  his favorite things with his ZogSports friends. From his 3 wishes to his celebrity idol, Evan tells all.

1.        Sports You Ref? SoccerEvan

2.        When did you start working at ZogSports? Winter 2014

3.        Guilty Pleasure? Candy … I love Candy

4.        Hometown? Huntington Beach, CA

5.        Hidden Talent? Ballet, (18 years) Archery, Martial arts (10+ years), I can whistle like a cricket

6.        Favorite Sports Team? Bruce Lee

7.    What’s the last thing you ate? Tacos

8.     Last movie you saw? 12 Years a Slave

9.    If you could only bring three things with you to an island, what would they be? A Ball, soccer most likely, hunting equipment, and my best friend.

10.    Which celebrity would you love to meet? Why? Freddie Mercury if he was still with us. I just idolize him. Now, Tom Hanks because I want his career.

11.    What are you listening to right now? La Chute, Yann Tiersen

12.    Favorite Sneakers? Red Snake skin Supra’s with gold laces.

13.    If you had 3 wishes, what would you wish for? The ability to grow a mustache like Tom Sellek instantly, The Millennium Falcon, Dirty Harry’s .44 Magnum.

14.    How long could you go without talking? 4 days… had to. Had pharyngitis. Lost 20 pounds in that 4 days too.

15.    What’s your favorite joke? What do you call a fish without an eye? FSH.

16.    What’s on your fridge door? A magnet that says if older is better; I’m reaching magnificent

17.  Fav food? Ribs. They’re just so good.

18. What’s on your mouse pad? I have a Laptop… but check out my awesome background  by Elena Vizerskaya.

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19. Have you ever been in a newspaper or on TV? If so, where? Haha yes. I have stilts and had pants and a vest made and crash the HB 4th of July parade every year! Everyone ends up loving me… I’ve been kicked out once but make the front page every year!

20. Best vacation you’ve ever been on? Why? My trip to Thailand. We spent a week sitting on the beach, snorkeling, riding elephants, drinking weird cocktails, and just having a wonderful time. One of the few travels that actually felt like a ‘vacation’.

20 Questions with Christina Galente

Today we have ZogSportsNYC’s Christina Galente sharing some of her favorite things with the Zog family. From “Stepbrothers” to Italy, Christina reveals all.

1.       Sports You Ref? Field Manage for Football; Referee for CornholeChristina

2.        When did you start working at ZogSports? July 2011?

3.        Guilty Pleasure?  Watching Stepbrothers on a weekly basis

4.        Hidden Talent?  Whistling

5.        Favorite Sports Team? NY METS

6.        If you were a drink, what would it be? Why?  A Guinness.  I’m easy-going, can look heavy, but be deceptively light (in character), tasty, fun and Irish people love me.

7.        Funniest ZogSports Memory? Watching Adam Riff try to ref a football game in his roller blades (he bladed to the game and forgot his sneakers).

8.        If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the title should be?  DJ Clueless-ask Joey in the Zog office

9.    What’s the last thing you ate? Greek Yogurt-Chobani-Blueberry

10.    If you could only bring three things with you to an island, what would they be? A book (The Count of Monte Cristo or The Alchemist), sunblock & fresh water

11.    Best vacation you’ve ever been on? Why?  Italy…no explanation neededimages

12.    What are you listening to right now? Clueless Soundtrack

13.    If you had 3 wishes, what would you wish for? 1) Eternal happiness for myself, my friends and my family, 2) to eat anything I wanted and never worry about the consequences 3) know what I was meant to be

14.    What’s your favorite joke? Inappropriate,  it’s from the movie Boondock Saints and the punchline is, “I’ll have a coke.”

15.    What’s on your fridge door? A ton of save-the-dates, magnets with funny sayings and pictures of other people’s children.

16.  Fav food? PIZZA!Christina 3

17.  Last movie you saw? Dallas Buyers Club

18. Beer Pong or Flip Cup? Neither…Beirut

19. Have you ever been in a newspaper or on tv? If so, where? Sure, debuting my amazing volleyball skills in high school-The Poughkeepsie Journal

20. Which celebrity would you love to meet? Why?  Leo Di Caprio-so he can propose to me face-to-face

Capturing ZogSports One Zogger at a Time

Jon Michael Kondrath can be found either playing, refereeing or capturing photos during the ZogSportsLA season. Now he gives Zoggers a glimpse into his life as an ultimate Zogger:jon2

As a youngster in middle school and high school, I always loved playing sports and taking photos. I did both as hobbies and for fun; I didn’t like playing on varsity because it was too competitive and my photos went as far as yearbooks and school papers. After high school, I expected my sporting days were over and I fell out of photography for a time.

Both sports and photography reentered my life several years ago, because of volleyball (finding a pickup game which lead into social sports and attending a USC volleyball game which lead into sports photography). Social sports brought back what I loved about playing sports when I was young, playing a game with friends.

Over the years, I’ve met many great people and good friends through social sports. I’ve played in different leagues and different sports. Some were great for a while and then fell apart, others didn’t feel like the right fit, and some sports I just wasn’t that into the league.

As one of the leagues I was previously in was slowly spiraling downward, I was introduced to Zog in its second season in LA. That season was a trial period, test out this new kid in town and see what it’s made of. I knew what a good social league could be and should be, so I had high expectations.

Although some of my teammates were skeptical of the league, I immediately fell in love with it. New people gathering for sports and for social interaction afterwards, a league that cares about its players and the greater community, and something I hadn’t seen before – photos posted of us playing. I’m used to taking photos for USC and posting those, because they are a big school with athletes who have dedicated their lives to a sport. But, here we are, social sports enthusiasts, with a chance of having a moment of glory captured and forever immortalized. jon3

In my next season, I immediately immersed myself in the league. I joined all four of the sports offered in Los Angeles and became a ref for beach volleyball (because who wouldn’t want to spend more time out on the beach?). During the beach volleyball season, I would bring my camera gear with me on occasion because I would have it for the weekend due to some sporting event I was shooting. I didn’t know who the Zogsports photographer was or if they would show up to our games, so I figured I would take some photos and share them with my teammates and the friends I was making. After posting some on Facebook, the LA General Manager asked if he could post them on the Zog Facebook page. I have no shame in admitting I love to see my photos posted up by others and seen by as many people as possible.

Enter season three with Zog, and I am now taking photos at as many of the games as I can. Some weekends my gear isn’t available or I may be too busy to take photos, but otherwise my camera is out capturing moments of athleticism, victory, and camaraderie. Every weekend, I meet new people who come up to me to say they saw a photo I took of them. Sometimes the comment is about the funny face they are making and to “next time get a photo when I’m looking better.” Other times it’s pure excitement for snapping the lucky moment of a game-winning play. Most of the time it’s to say thank you because they enjoyed looking at the photos. (I have no shame in admitting I love the Facebook likes and the positive comments of perfectly captured action, as well. So keep them coming!)

The reason I love photography, and social sports, is the sharing. Sure I love being complimented on a great photo or a great play on the field. But more importantly, I play sports and take photos for the interaction. Playing sports in a league where people show up and then go home, or only interact with their own team to practice and play in the game, is not fun for me. In a similar fashion, photography would not be enjoyable if I just took the photos and then kept them to myself. It’s the people that make both so precious to me: the people I play with, the people I socialize with on and off the field, and the people that are sharing and enjoying the photos. I am happy to have found ZogSports and its community of players and staff and I am proud to be able to contribute to the growth of the league in Los Angeles.jon1

Featured Zogger: Dalila Castillo

This week, we’re featuring the founder of the Young Professionals Committee and an NYC Zogger, Dalila Castillo. After recently discovering her Cerebral Palsy diagnosis, Dalila has quickly become a leading voice for young adults in the CP community.

DCJust about a year and a half ago, Dalila Castillo learned she was born with a mild case of Cerebral Palsy (CP). CP is a brain disorder that causes a wide range of developmental disabilities. People living with CP suffer impairments with body movement, posture and balance and some people with CP also have problems with hearing, vision, speech, and swallowing.

Upon discovering her CP diagnosis, Dalila noticed that many of her peers were not aware that CP affects people on a wide spectrum, just like autism and any other brain disorder. She realized that she had the opportunity to be an advocate and a voice on behalf of the CP community and thus, decided to start the Young Professionals Committee (YPC) within the Cerebral Palsy International Research Foundation (CPIRF). You can read more about Dalila’s discovery of her diagnosis, and her decision to start the YPC here.

The YPC members are leaders who seek to impact the development of cutting edge research related to discovering a cause, prevention, and treatment for CP; empower young people with the ability to educate their community about CP; create an established network of young professionals committed to their social responsibility, and encourage an upcoming generation of philanthropic leaders.

Although the YPC was founded merely months ago, in July 2013, it has already been successful in increasing awareness and impacting CP research. The YPC’s cocktail party and happy hour fundraisers have successfully raised nearly $9,000 for CPIRF to date. Also, members of the YPC (New Balls on the Block) participated in ZogSports’ dodgeball league this past winter to spread their message to a wider audience. Many YPC members came out to support Dalila and the team, and during the season, they shared Dalila’s story and have continued momentum.

ZogDC

“I’ve learned that my CP can be a positive impetus. I have chosen to view my recent discovery of the diagnosis as an opportunity –- an opportunity to share my story, to let people know what it means to have CP, and ultimately, to make an impact and empower others.… I am pleased and excited to help educate and inform younger generations about CP and CPIRF as the founding Chairperson of the Young Professional Committee (YPC).  The YPC will be raising awareness and funds for CPIRF’s research programs through fun social events.”  Dalila C. Castillo, Founder, YPC

To stay updated on CPIRF’s YPC, please email cpirf.ypc@gmail.com

 

UWSLoves: One Zogger Makes A Difference

After safely riding out Sandy in her apartment on the UWS, Zogger Amanda Bickerstaff wanted to help any way she could. After spending a few days volunteering at Red Cross shelters all around Long Island, she returned back to her UWS home and realized she wanted to do even more. As she was busy cooking in her kitchen, she thought of the perfect idea to continue helping out. That was when she decided to form her very own organization, UWSLoves. Amanda spent the next three weeks feeding 1,500 people hot food, baking for over 1,500 people, and making over 3,000 sandwiches right out of her home. Through the help of friends and volunteers, they were able to help communities in Rockaway, Coney Island and Brooklyn.  As the recovery went on, she joined forces with Do Your Part, a 501(c)3 charity that has been integral in disaster relief since Hurricane Katrina. Through her efforts they have raised over $30,000 in monetary and in kind donations, hosted a group of volunteers from Vermont, hosted a Children’s Festival in Rockaway, and helped out hundreds of families. Biscuts

A year later, the communities are still in need, so UWSLoves is hosting a fundraiser on October 26th at No Idea Bar to raise additional money. All donations will go towards families, like the one of a volunteer firefighter in Gerristen Beach that has spent so much time helping others that she has neglected her own recovery and must now completely rebuild her home. Click here to purchase tickets for the event.

Hope to see you there Zoggers!