Lau selected as Hudson Booster Days’ parade Grand Marshal“It’s guys like Randy Lau that are the reason why I’m stepping up,” said Hudson Boosters President Tom Smith, “He’s the role model and the mentor.”
By: By Jace Frederick, Hudson Star-Observer
“It’s guys like Randy Lau that are the reason why I’m stepping up,” said Hudson Boosters President Tom Smith, “He’s the role model and the mentor.”
Thoughts like these from members throughout the Booster Club made veteran member Randy Lau an easy choice for grand marshal of the 2012 Hudson Booster Days’ parade. The parade will be held along Second Street in downtown Hudson at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 30.
“It is an honor to be recognized as the grand marshal for this year’s Booster Days event and I look forward to my on-going involvement with the Booster Club organization,” Lau said of his selection.
Lau, a Hudson High School graduate, has been an active member of the Boosters since 1996. He served as the vice president of the organization in 2000 and was elected as president in 2001; a position he held for two years.
Lau is dedicated to his work as a Booster. He says he enjoys helping the community develop to benefit the people. Over his last 10 years of service, he has focused on improvements and additions of baseball and softball fields in the community.
“I take a lot of satisfaction out of being involved in community activities and events and trying to make things better for the next generation of people coming through,” said Lau, “that’s why I think I moved in the ball field direction. That’s something I could actually take on, lead, improve, make a difference, and see what I was doing.”
With approximately 1,000-1,200 kids in the community involved in youth baseball and softball, the importance of the program has grown.
“It involves a large number of kids. It provides an opportunity for them to participate in a sporting event that they see on TV and they experience. It’s just something fun that we can do for the kids. It’s a positive experience for everybody,” he said.
The Boosters use roughly 26 different fields for softball and baseball. Lau has headed numerous improvements to these fields, including additions of outfield fences on fields in North Hudson and the town of Hudson, creating new parks in the town of Troy and the town of Hudson, working with the high school to update the varsity and JV fields as well as constructing new batting cages in Grandview Park, and various other field and facility projects. Lau served as the ball field coordinator from 2002 to 2008, dealing with daily maintenance issues and field development.
Smith commented on Lau’s orchestration of the addition of the third ballpark in North Hudson.
“He took what was no more than a ditch next to a county road and had the vision to fit another ball field in there,” Smith said. “To turn a clover field ditch into a ball field is such a virtuous act. All he wants to do is see kids run around out there.”
He praised Lau for his execution in leading various projects, saying, “It’s a lot harder than it looks.”
Lau has been on the park board since 2004, helping with the collaboration between the Boosters and various government entities.
“I can act as a liaison between the Boosters and some of our activities, needs, and what we’ve got going on with the school district and what’s going on in the city. It’s been a good mix to have that insight,” he said.
Lau has worked in the automotive division of the 3M Corporation for 35 years. He and his wife, Mary, have two children, Tim and Maren. Both children, like their parents, are Hudson High School graduates. Lau and his wife were very involved in their children’s lives as they grew up. Lau became actively involved with the Boosters and Booster Days when he began coaching his son’s baseball team in 1990. He coached the same group of kids until 1999. His wife coached their daughter’s softball team.
Lau said the highlight of those years was when the boys were 13-year-olds and they made it to the league championship game. Advancing to that point gave the team the opportunity to play at the Metrodome.
“It was great, and those guys were a lot of fun,” he said.
Once he became involved with the Boosters through his children’s athletics, becoming a member was an easy decision.
“Our kids and family have had the opportunity to experience fun and excitement being involved with the Boosters and since our family loves baseball and softball, it was a natural for me to join and stay involved in something that I love to do” he said.
As president in 2001, Lau played an intricate role in the switch to the Booster Days event’s current location at the north end of Lakefront Park following the flooding of the river at the previous location on the south end. The Boosters decided to make the north side location the home of the event for the years to follow.
“I think it was just a selling point to say this is bigger, we have a lot more room up here. If we do this, this, and this, we can make it work in our favor,” he said, “once we got there and had a couple of years under our belt it became home.”
The Boosters recently bought between 17-20 acres of land. They plan to add roughly four new ball fields in that area, which leads to a lot more work for this year’s grand marshal, a challenge he looks forward to.
“It’s never about me. It’s about what we’re trying to do for the kids and for somebody else,” he said.