JEFFERSON - The Lake Shawnee Club continued its summer kickoff with another successful community day at First Beach, Saturday, June 21.
An annual event that officially marks the beginning of the swimming season, Lake Shawnee Community Day has turned into a friendly rivalry between the east and west sides of the lake.
“It’s very competitive,” said Social Committee Head Dina Troha. “We have to hire an outside umpire for the softball game.”
“There’s a nice little rivalry,” agreed Eric Wilsusen, President of the Lake Shawnee Club.
Kevin DenBleykery, 12, chose that moment to show just how competitive it can get as he ran by, yelling, “East is the least, west is the best!”
Throughout the day, each side forms teams to compete in a number of sport events. The contest was close this year with the west side taking kickball and the fishing contest and the east side coming out on top with volleyball, horseshoes, and a slim victory in the softball game. In the end, the west side pulled their way to the Community Day Cup when they won all three tug-of-wars.
As the west fought their way to a fifth straight Cup win, Scoot on Down, a much-loved local band, provided the day’s soundtrack.
“They’re very popular with the Lake Shawnee crowd,” said Wilsusen about the 7-piece ska-rock band. Formed in 1999, Scoot on Down has become a fixture at bars and restaurants around Lake Hopatcong, particularly Gatwyn’s II.
As for the much coveted Cup, when it’s not in the hands of the winning team at Community Day, it remains a permanent fixture in the Lake Shawnee Clubhouse.
“You can see just a little red spattered about the winners,” Troha said, referencing the losing east side’s colors. “The rest is blue. West, west, west, west all the way down.”