Volunteer of the Year final

Left to right: Rebecca Olson, Mike Adams, Trevin Ward

Campustown is always a busy place, but it might not always be easy to see just how much. So much of the achievements and activities are due to the countless hours contributed by volunteers, most of which are business owners in the neighborhood. This year, we acknowledged Mike Adams, owner of Welch Avenue Station, with our 2015 Volunteer of the Year Award in January at the Annual Awards Reception hosted by the Ames Chamber of Commerce. His tireless efforts made the 2015 Summerfest event a smooth process and proved to everyone what an asset Mike is to our community.

It was a lovely afternoon that showcased volunteers from all over Ames and their continual dedication to various causes all year long. The most common theme reflected in award recipients’ acceptance speeches was humbly acknowledging the work of others and how small their role was. Mike is no different. Working at Welch Avenue Station for over 30 years, manager for most of that time, he often says how he regrets not pitching in with Campustown earlier. It was a surprise to no one that he was nominated unanimously. While Mike is caring, he is particularly concerned about the direction of the neighborhood. “Maybe it even hurt his feelings a little bit that people assume it’s not a community-friendly area,” says David Cook, bartender at Welch Avenue Station for the last 15 years or so.

“I didn’t really do that much. Other people do a lot too. There’s nothing special about what I did. Anyone could do it,” Mike shyly insisted after he was nominated. Hearing this from him for the third or fourth time, faux-exasperated I said, “But you did do all that. You worked for hours helping out at Summerfest, and so many other things all the time, for no reason other than you felt like it. That’s wonderful! Let us thank you!” He finally did, very humbly.

CAA at Annual Event minus Ryan

Just a handful of the people committed to making Campustown better every year!