In it’s ten years, the Chapel Hilltopper Lacrosse Foundation has worked tirelessly to provide more lacrosse opportunities to the Triangle and beyond. While the Bull City All Star Game is our signature event each year, raising nearly $50,000 for collegiate lacrosse scholarships through the NCHSAA Tony Cullen Fund and The Duke Cancer Institute, the Foundation has also been active in other areas. For several years, the Foundation has provided equipment to several local middle school programs and provided financial assistance to many middle schools to help promote the sport and provide additional financial support.
The Foundation has also provided scholarship assistance to those unable to afford the costs associated with starting to play lacrosse as well as play continued lacrosse that , in numerous cases, has led to financial assistance in college. The Foundation, along with the Triad Blackhawks, help to start the Neal Middle School Lacrosse program in Durham seven years ago, and has donated over 50 helmets to programs in need recently.
The Founder of the Foundation is Franklin Zirkle, recently retired as a high school head coach, and Director of the Carolina Hilltopper Select Lacrosse program. When Coach Z started the program, students in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro School Districts were required to perform 50 hours of community service for graduation. Having coached at East Chapel Hill High School until 2011, when his team lost in the NCHSAA finals, he wanted to ensure that lacrosse players could receive community service hours by giving back to the sport. Over the past decade, the Foundation has supervised numerous young people obtaining community service hours as they give back to the sport and even assist in the management of the Bull City All Star Game.
The Zirkle family, including wife Kimberly, and son’s Chandler and Hartford, have been very involved in the sport. As a family, they attended the World Championships in Canada to cheer on a former local player. They also attended numerous NCAA Finals and have attended U.S. Lacrosse Conventions to increase their coaching knowledge.
“Our goal is to continue to expand and improve the game. As a former collegiate coach, high school coach, and official, I have a broad perspective on the game. We try to provide opportunities for young people to become coaches and officials, while also giving opportunities for young people to be introduced to the game.”
We thank you for your continued support of the Foundation.