St Johns Catholic Men’s Club

President:  Jaime Clark
Vice President: Denny Tokic
Treasurer: Andrew Mikesic                                                                        Financial Secretary:  Nicholas Tomasic
Recording Secretary: John Mayfield
Sergeant At Arms: Donald Taylor
Board of Trustees: Frank Bartkoski, John Mikesic and Joe Sachen
Board of Directors:  Jacob Glenn, Brian Roberts, Jeff Sachen, Larry Steele and Matt Tomasic

St. John’s Catholic Club History

The SJCC has formed in 1922 with the approval of then Msgr Krmpotic for the purpose of providing fellowship and a place for recreation.  The hall beneath the church was originally used for its meetings and social gatherings.  By 1923 it was apparent that a larger space was needed.  A larger two story building, with the lower floor consisting of clubrooms and the upper floor an auditorium, was planned and construction began.  The building was completed with the help of volunteers, both young and old.  On June 24th, 1925 the building was blessed.

The Club secured finances to install two bowling lanes, bowling balls, two billiard tables and other fixtures.  Over the years the Club sponsored competitions in activities and sports of all kinds.  Bowling, baseball, basketball, football, and softball were  some of the activities offered.

The baseball team was very well known in the Midwest area.  From the 1930’s and immediately following the war, the team had success against many semi-professional teams in the region.

Bowling was the most popular and led to the purchase of additional lanes in 1939 and 1947.  Bringing the total to 6 lanes as we have now.  The last modern item added were the automatic pinsetters in September of 1968 in the completely remodeled clubroom.  The original lanes have since been replaced in 2012 along with various upgrades to the Club room.

The Club was very instrumental in the preservation and propagation of the Croatian heritage through song and dance.  It was under the auspices of the Club that the St. John Junior Tamburitza Program was started in 1965.  It was a group formed to preserve and teach the Croatian culture through the songs and dances of the people who settled the Hill and formed the parish of St. John the Baptist.

Under the tutelage of Don Lipovac, qualified students moved on to form the St. John’s Catholic Club Tamburitzans.  This group performed for the 1st time in public with a concert in 1965 in the Club Auditorium.  This was the first of many performances both locally and nationally.  Along with recordings and television appearances.  At various ethnic festivals in the region they were a constant participant. And even undertook a visit to the country of their ancestors, Yugoslavia.

Today, the Club continues to host community events. In the past few years, there have been watch parties for the Croatian National Soccer team as they play in world tournaments. Through these activities, the Club has hosts many thousands of fans!