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September 30, 2023 – Over 80 people representing 22 teams participated on an unseasonably warm day in the 28th Annual Camp Ondessonk Golf Benefit held at Roland Barkau Memorial Golf Course in Okawville.  Korte & Luitjohan’s founder, Pete Korte, a dedicated supporter of Camp O, created the golf scramble as a way to support the camp’s mission.  Pete, who passed away a few days prior to the event, was honored during the post-golf lunch.

K & L hosts the annual golf outing and had two teams participating.  Team one was comprised of Ben Ambuel, Gregg Korte, Kyle Luitjohan, and John Whitworth. Team two players were Jim Bugger, Jacob Theising, Al Toennies, and Ken Toennies.

Camp Ondessonk is a Catholic youth camp located in the Shawnee National Forest of Southern Illinois.

Next year’s golf benefit is slated for September 21.

Heepwah!

September 30, 2023 – Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc. participates in a few Touch-a-Truck events each year.  None is bigger than the one hosted by Edwardsville Township at its community park.  Several hundred young folks attend the event, which allows them the opportunity to get a close view (and maybe a hands-on experience) with a variety of equipment.  K & L brought its mini-excavator.  Yes, it was a huge hit with the kids!  Each child received a K & L replica construction helmet and a juice box.  K & L’s Adam Kampwerth and Traci Albers were our ambassadors at the event.

August 8, 2023 – K & L is offering a new outreach program to area youth. Construction Time is a 40-minute program that includes the reading of construction-themed books, a discussion on construction jobs, and a chance to try on real construction helmets and safety vests. K & L’s marketing coordinator, John Goldsmith, leads the program, which is provided for free. The first Construction Time programs were held at the Greenville Public Library on June 1 and the Highland Public Library on July 12.  Another program is scheduled September 9 at the Glen Carbon Library.  Construction Time is ideal for kids from ages 5 to 8.  For more information, contact Goldsmith at (618) 654-9877.

June 12, 2023 – Middle school and high school students from various school districts, including Highland, participated the week of June 25-16 in the Madison County Regional Office of Education’s Construction Camp. This is the third year for the weeklong camp, which is open to 7th through 12th graders.  Students create a variety of projects alongside career and technical education (CTE) teachers and seasoned construction professionals.

Jason Schwarz, a project superintendent for Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc., spent a day helping seventeen 7th graders build doghouses that will be donated to the Metro East Humane Society.  He demonstrated the proper use of tools and provided a helping hand when needed.  Each student was given a K & L construction pencil to take home.  Schwarz commented that he enjoyed working with the kids and encouraging them to consider a career in the building trades.

June 9, 2023 – Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc. (K & L) recently partnered with Operating Engineers Local 520 to donate carpenters and laborers to a foundation pour at the latest Habitat for Humanity house in Collinsville.  Howard Concrete Pumping also donated manpower and equipment to the project.  Over the course of several days, six K & L employees – Travis Catron, Travis Lappe, Jim Lautz, Jason Schwarz, Kyle Schwarz, and Jacob Theising – spent a total of 70 hours helping.  K & L thanks our own Travis Catron, who coordinated the concrete pour with Local 520’s Rusty Redman.

This is the Lewis and Clark Affiliate’s seventh house in Collinsville, but 70th overall since 1995.  The Lewis & Clark region also includes chapters in Alton, Bond County, Edwardsville/Glen Carbon, and O’Fallon.

Kim Hicks, Collinsville Family Nurture Chair, said, “Besides volunteering at the build site and the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, our Habitat partner is a working mom with one daughter.  She is also a proud member of the Army National Guard. Her vision is to work alongside community volunteers to provide a beautiful, affordable home in which her family will thrive.”

Anyone wishing to share their building skills can contact Vince Livie, volunteer coordinator, at Habitat4HumanityVolunteers@gmail.com  or by messaging their Facebook page, Lewis & Clark Habitat for Humanity, Collinsville, IL.

K & L will be a corporate sponsor of Highland Speedway in 2023, the 62nd consecutive season of racing on the quarter-mile dirt track.  K & L will be sponsoring the new Driver’s Profile Wall, located on the chain-link fence near the ticket shed.  Between 20 and 30 drivers will be highlighted on the fence with individual signs.  K & L’s logo will be prominently featured in the display.

Racing begins on April 1 and will include Super Late Models, Modifieds, ProMods, Street Stocks, and Warriors.  According to a press release from Highland Speedway, “two Sprint Car events are also on the schedule, and for the first time in many years Midgets will return.”

K & L looks forward to supporting Highland Speedway, which attracts thousands of race fans each year.

Last fall, K & L was a sponsor of Chad Lappe’s team in the 24-Hour Laps for Leaps event at Highland Speedway.  Teams vied for the most laps recorded in 24 consecutive hours.  The Lappe team finished second.  Funds raised benefited Leaps of Love, a group that supports children with brain tumors and other cancers.

Korte & Luitjohan Contractors purchased toys for 10 children in Caritas Family Solution’s annual Angel Tree program. K & L employees Traci Albers, Bill Blechinger, Janet Gillespie, John Goldsmith, Lisa Pontious, and Cynthia Simpson did our shopping. John Whitworth, K & L vice president, delivered the toys to Alexis and Cody in Caritas’s Highland office on Friday, December 2, 2022.  K & L President Gregg Korte serves on Caritas’s board of directors.

Korte & Luitjohan President Gregg Korte delivered toys November 30th to Hillsdale Demolition & Contracting for their 1st Annual Community Toy Drive. Ley Woods, Hillsdale’s general manager, accepted the donation. The company was founded in 2014 by Lakkia Davis-Hynes, whose grandfather had also been in the construction industry.

“It’s all for the kids!”

The personal motto of Pete Korte, chairman of Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc., in Highland, Illinois rang especially true this year at the Camp Ondessonk 27th Annual Golf Benefit. Thanks to the passion and dedication of Korte and his family, friends, and colleagues, almost one million dollars has been raised over the past 27 years, providing tuition assistance for families, changing countless lives through the opportunity to attend summer camp.

This year’s Golf Benefit took place at the Roland Barkau Memorial Golf Course in Okawville, Illinois on October 8, 2022. In addition to the time and dedication of volunteers, this event would not be possible without the support of many sponsors. The Premium tournament sponsors were Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc., Beelman Ready Mix, Pepsi MidAmerica, Prindable Insurance Agency, and Thomas Young, Sr. The Diamond sponsor was Roland Machinery Company. The Platinum sponsors were Ameren Illinois, First Mid Bank & Trust, Jim & Carol Henrichs, Jansen Chevrolet, Keeley & Sons, Midwest Municipal Supply, Jim & Kate Shively, SICAP, and USI Insurance & Bonds. The golfer gift sponsor was Silkworm, Inc., and the food and beverage sponsors included US Foods, Trenton Processing, Robert “Chick” Fritz Distributing, and Pepsi MidAmerica.

The Pete Korte family’s involvement and support of Camp Ondessonk spans decades. His children and grandchildren attended Camp and served as counselors, and Pete and his generous employees have donated thousands of hours of their time, equipment, and construction expertise to help build many projects around Camp Ondessonk. The current K&L assisted project involves laying pipes for a new staff duplex on property to be named Pete Korte Lodge, honoring Pete’s legacy and support for Ondessonk.

In 2022, Camp Ondessonk served nearly 3,200 campers during the summer season, steadily building since the loss of summer camp 2020, with the majority from Illinois and Missouri.

Thank you to Pete & Jane Korte, their beautiful family, the employees at Korte & Luitjohan, and all the businesses, sponsors, and golfers who have supported the campers of Ondessonk for the last 27 incredible years, and for many years to come!

(PRESS RELEASE COURTESY OF CAMP ONDESSONK)

It was another successful (and crowded) Touch a Truck at Edwardsville Township Community Park on September 24, 2022. Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc. was happy to be a sponsor and participant in the event. Thanks to our Adam Kampwerth for representing K & L and thanks to our friends at Luby Equipment for partnering with us.  Kids were given K & L coloring books, plastic construction helmets, and juice boxes.