Parkland Soccer Club
Pictured are the scholarship recipients from left to right: Samantha Hernandez, Zack Stevens, Owen Balban, Hannah Leon, Gianna Cruz, Morgan Cody, Zachary Weissman, and Kelly Ferber. Also pictured are the Parkland Soccer Board of Directors, Parkland City Commissioner Bob Mayersohn, and Parkland Mayor Rich Walker. Credit: Parkland Soccer Club

By Kevin Deutsch

Eight high school seniors were awarded college scholarships for $500 Saturday from the Parkland Soccer Club, club officials said.

The scholarship recipients were college-bound seniors Samantha Hernandez, Zack Stevens, Owen Balban, Hannah Leon, Gianna Cruz, Morgan Cody, Zachary Weissman, and Kelly Ferber, the club said in a written announcement.

The academic and soccer standouts received their scholarships, along with oversized checks, during the club’s annual awards picnic at Pine Trails Park Amphitheater. The scholarships were dedicated in the name of Pete and Linda Gado, the founders of Parkland Soccer Club, who recently passed away.

According to organizers, the scholarships were based on the students’ academic performance, community service, written essays, and participation in the Parkland Soccer Club.

According to the club, over 1,500 children and family members attended the festivities, which featured music, ice cream, rides, bounce houses, carnival games, and other activities.

Attendees also brought along cleats, gently used shoes, and soccer gear to donate to children in need.

In another upcoming event honoring the Gados, the soccer club will dedicate a new park bench, plant a tree, and place a commemorative plaque to recognize the couple’s years of service. The event takes place Saturday, March 12, at Pine Trails Park Amphitheater, 10555 Trails End, and run from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Members of the Gado family will also be on hand to meet community members and hear stories about the couple.

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Author Profile

Kevin Deutsch
Kevin Deutsch
Kevin Deutsch is an award-winning crime journalist and author. A graduate of Florida International University, Kevin has worked on staff at The Miami Herald, New York Daily News, and The Palm Beach Post.

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