I-Club Spring Banquet held in Dubuque
The spring National I-Club banquet tour continued on May 31 with a stop in Peosta, IA for the Dubuque County I-Club event. Over 300 fans and contributors were in attendance to hear comments from coaches Ferentz, Bluder, Andrew Francis of men’s basketball and Mike Zadick from wrestling.
The master of ceremonies for the evening was the Voice of the Hawkeyes, Gary Dolphin, native of nearby Dubuque. Many of Gary Dolphin’s jokes and stories told at the podium on the I-Club circuit incorporate the people and environment of Dubuque, IA so this was an ideal place for Gary to find out what the locals think of his material. He was well received.
A very special guest of the evening was longtime color analyst and Hawkeye great, Ed Podolak. Ed suffered serious injuries in an accident in February from which he is still recovering. The Dubuque County I-Club event marked his first public appearance since the accident, made at the request of his close friend Gary Dolphin. Ed spoke briefly, thanking Hawkeye Nation for their support, prayers and well wishes. He commended that his rehabilitation efforts are going very well and that he looked forward to being back in the booth in the fall calling the game with Dolph. He said that choosing to make his first appearance at the Dubuque County I-Club was like making your first horse race the Kentucky Derby – stick with the best. The comparison was met with applause for both Dubuque, and for Ed.
There were former Hawkeye student athletes from the 1960’s, 1970’s, 1980’s, 1990’s, 2000’s and 2010’s in attendance – all were asked to stand and be recognized. Current student athletes Eric May, Mike Meyers, James Vandenberg and Matt Tobin were also at the event.
The coaches finished the program with detailed updates on their upcoming seasons and hopes for their new recruits. The Dubuque County I-Club net over $13,000 from their silent auction items and continue to be generous contributors to the success of Hawkeye athletics.