Old is new again at East Hampton High School: Alumni will have the opportunity to show their team spirit through a vintage uniform sale at this week’s Hall of Fame ceremony and Homecoming, where jerseys, jackets and other school-issued uniforms will make a reappearance.
According to Joe Vasile-Cozzo, the district’s athletic director, there are 20 bags worth of maroon-and-gray duds from across the years—some that are 20 years old.
“I’ve gathered them over the years, and at this point they are old, mismatched and out of circulation,” he said this week. “It’s taken me three years of working through the inventory. It would break my heart to throw them out when we could turn them around and raise money.”
All of the proceeds raised from the vintage uniform sale will go back to the school district and will be spent on things the district needs but couldn’t necessarily afford. Mr. Vasile-Cozzo said that he was hoping to put the money toward a new scoreboard but was happy to find out in September that the East Hampton Rotary Club is going to pay for a brand-new board, which is expected to cost about $17,000. Now that that project is taken care of, he hopes that the school board and School Superintendent Richard Burns will approve funding some improvements to the athletic program, like a new athletic trainer golf cart or new workout machines for the Kendall Madison Fitness Center, for example.
Those attending the Hall of Fame breakfast and induction ceremony or the homecoming carnival on Saturday will have many uniforms to choose from—basketball, football and soccer jerseys, field hockey skirts, and wrestling uniforms, to name a few. Shorts will sell for $5, shirts and jerseys will be sold for $10, and sweatshirts and jackets will go for $15.
Mr. Vasile-Cozzo said he has washed every piece of clothing and prepared them for the sale. Some, however, may have a stain or two, and many jerseys and shorts are missing their mates. Nonetheless, he knows people will appreciate these articles of East Hampton’s athletic history and that they could be put to use again.
“For a youth program out there, they could buy 20 of these jerseys for $10 apiece,” he said. “Why keep them here?” instead of putting them to use, he asked.
School Board Member Liz Pucci, a 1981 alumna who played field hockey and currently serves on the board’s athletic committee, said she is excited about the sale. “It’s something that Joe had mentioned a while ago, and I thought, ‘Wow, what a great way to do a little fundraising,’” she said. “People are always looking for old sweatshirts that the football team used to wear, or an old basketball jersey.”
She said that last year’s inaugural Hall of Fame induction ceremony brought 400 people through East Hampton High School doors, and she expects the uniforms to be a hit. “How great it would be for someone like an alumnus to get their old jersey back—something you think you discarded years ago?” she said. “It would be fabulous to have such a great memento forever to pass down to their kids.”
The Hall of Fame breakfast will be held in the high school cafeteria at 9 a.m. on Saturday with the induction ceremony to follow. Breakfast tickets cost $15 each. The homecoming carnival will start at 3:30 p.m. on the high school lawn.
The Homecoming parade will start at 11 a.m., and the football game will take place at 7:15 p.m.