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Volunteening at MillBridge: A Q&A with Bailey Lupo

When you think of a typical volunteer, a parent might be the first person that pops in your head. When we hear the word, we think of all ages because the youth in MillBridge are extremely involved. Our teens are gathering to serve their neighborhood and the greater Waxhaw community at an impressive level. A shining example is Bailey Lupo. Bailey has been helping lead the way over the past four years and we couldn’t be prouder of him. If you haven’t already met him in the ‘hood, we thought you may be interested in getting to know this inspiring young man a little better…

Q: Hi Bailey! Tell us a little more about yourself. Quick …

  • Where are you from? I am originally from Denver, Colorado. I’ve lived in South Carolina for several years too.
  • How old are you? I’m 15 years old.
  • How long have you lived at MillBridge? I’ve lived in MillBridge for four years now.
  • What school do you go to? I go to Cuthbertson High School (Go Cavs!).
  • What’s your favorite food? I love Italian, Chinese and Polish food. Kind of hard not to, since I am one-half Polish, quarter Italian and quarter Chinese. Baked ziti is one of my favorites, and a whole bunch of Polish dishes that my grandma makes that I can’t even pronounce.
  • What’s your favorite sport/hobby? Swimming is my favorite sport. I also love to play competitive Airsoft.
  • Do you have any other fun facts you’d like to share? I hate roller coasters and scary movies. I love reptiles. I’ve owned a Ball Python since I was seven. I am a member of the Waxhaw Police Explorers Program where I take part in community activities outside of MillBridge.
Q: Interesting indeed. What volunteer events have you participated in at MillBridge? Which was your favorite and why?
A: I have participated in every single type of event in MillBridge, including  Light up MillBridge, Fall Festival, Easter Egg Hunt, Turkey Trot, Shop While You Drop, Parent’s Night Out, MillBridge Marlins Swim Team, Camp KC (our neighborhood’s summer camp for kids) and many more! I’ve also had the privilege to attend volunteer appreciation events organized by MillBridge, such as Pancake Breakfast for Teens, Movie Night, and Summer DJ Pool Party. My favorite event has always been Light up MillBridge. I love seeing everyone participate in the Christmas holiday fun. I get to help out, interact with the people in the community and have fun with my friends.

Q: What do you like most about your neighborhood?
A: I love living at MillBridge! There is a lot of diversity in the community. I really enjoy seeing people come out and have a good time. I think the social events are amazing! There is something here for everyone and that really brings people together. It’s like we’re all one big family.

Q: Tell us about your swimming lessons for the upcoming year.
A: Swimming has been my passion ever since I was really little. If I could make everyone love swimming as much as I do, I would. So, I try pretty hard. Last year I was the head coach for the youngest group of kids (“the shrimps”) on our neighborhood’s swim team, the MillBridge Marlins. I also helped our coach, Coach Nina, organize volunteering for other kids who were interested in coaching our youngest group. I think this year will be similar. If I can help the older kids in any way, I will do that too. Anything Coach Nina needs me to do, I will do. And, I can’t forget the actual swimming of course. Competing at the meets is my favorite part, not just because I love to compete, but because it’s a time where everyone in the neighborhood gets together.

Q: What would you like to say to the other kids at MillBridge?
A: I would tell them to just get out there. Try new things every day. You won’t know what you like or what you are good at unless you try all kinds of things. If something turns out horrible at least you can say you did it. You will meet new people, make new friends, learn new things, and you’ll have fun. If you’re shy, fight it because it’s really worth it in the end, and MillBridge is a great place to get started.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share?
A: Yes. I feel very lucky to have had so many amazing experiences both here at MillBridge and in the community in general. I have been surrounded by many caring and loving people for whom I am very thankful, people like:

  • My parents who are always there for me and who always push me to be the best I can be
  • Ms. Kelley Archer, who has been my mentor throughout the years, who always believes in me and has made it possible for me to further develop my swimming career
  • The MillBridge Marlins Swim Team coach, Coach Nina McPherson, who always makes me feel needed and gives me many opportunities to shine
  • The many people I have spent time volunteering with, who have become my friends
  • Ms. Donna Casey from Camp KC who has given me the opportunity to work with our neighborhood’s kids over the summer for the past two years
I also want to thank all the officers at the Waxhaw Police Explorer Program who have been a huge inspiration to me (and who love to keep me in line!). Last of all, I want to thank my teachers and coaches who always bring out the best in me. I would not be who I am without these amazing people.

A huge thank you to Bailey for all he does. If you or someone you know would like to participate in the next MillBridge Volunteen event, you can view our calendar here or contact marketing manager Kelley Archer at archer@landavor.com.

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