NORTH ROYALTON – It’s not every day you see Chomps from the Cleveland Browns and Webster from the Akron RubberDucks together in one place.
The silly antics of this dog and duck stole the show and won the kids over at Ward 3 Councilman Dan Langshaw’s Family Fun Night at The Jump Yard. Langshaw hosted the event from 6-8 p.m. July 18 as a way to unite Ward 3 constituents and collect food items for the North Royalton Food Bank. Residents were given free admission in exchange for bringing in nonperishable food.
Zandra Swiger, 5, was instantly drawn to Webster. She climbed into a bounce house, and he waddled in after her to jump around a bit.
“He just climbed in with her,” her mom, Susan Schumacher, said. “That’s what she wanted.”
Schumacher grew up in Ward 3, moved away for a while but recently returned to the home her grandfather built. It’s also the home her own mother grew up in when she was younger.
“I actually read about this event in The Post and thought it would be a fun evening for my little girl as well as a chance to meet other Ward 3 residents,” she said. “I grew up in the area and came back and am trying to get back into it.”
Jen and Chris Amburn brought their little girl, Zoe, 4, up to the event for the same reason.
“We wanted to come for two reasons, one, we thought she would enjoy it. We also wanted to help because we knew this was for the North Royalton food pantry. We thought we’d kill two birds with one stone – help people and have fun jumping around,” Jen Amburn said.
“It’s a good cause, and we get the opportunity to take our daughter out. It’s all good,” Chris Amburn added.
A few inflatables down from the Amburns, the Burkes were watching Webster ruffle some feathers by bending the rules.
A sign read, “keep off the stage,” but Webster was lounging across it, kicking up his webbed feet.
Dawn Burke pointed out his mischievousness to her 5-year-old twin daughters, Kayleigh and Keira.
“We just wanted to support our ward. It’s great how he encourages the community to come together,” she said, referring to Langshaw.
Langshaw said he was more than happy to host the event for his ward residents while at the same time collecting some much needed donations for the food bank.
“In the summer, the food bank’s shelves can get a little bare. So it’s nice to do something fun for the Ward 3 residents but also help a good cause. There’s always a need for the food bank, but I think people forget that. I like finding fun ways to get my Ward 3 residents together, and who doesn’t like Webster and Chomps?” he said.
Steve Schwarz, owner of The Jump Yard, was more than willing to offer up his Ward 3 business for the get together.
“Anything we can do to bring the community together and promote family values, that’s what we try to do,” he said.
Langshaw’s parents Don and Kathy and his twin sisters Grace and Dana all volunteered to greet people at the door and collect the food bank items.
Don Langshaw said the most touching thing he witnessed was the very first family enter and their little girl place food into the bin that she had picked out and bought with her own money she had saved. It reminded him of his own children donating food at church when they were younger.
For once, the weather cooperated and was actually a sunny, hot day, which ironically enough, isn’t the greatest of weather for this type of indoor event. Rain, in this instance, brings in more people, but the Langshaws were grateful nonetheless. More than 50 food items were donated.
“The turnout isn’t what people hoped for,” Don Langshaw said, “but the generosity for the food bank was over the top.”