Lovey Curlee wasn’t born “Lovey,” but she grew into her nickname early on.
There were already a couple of “L-names” in the family so Lauren, 15, became Lovey as a baby.
It stuck. She’s usually introduced as Lauren, but most people soon pick up the moniker.
Curlee plans to spend about 20 hours a week this summer helping prepare and serve meals to seniors with the nonprofit group Coastal Seniors.
Curlee is expected to help serve between 50 and 75 seniors each meal and will likely be called upon to help with filing and other duties for the operation that serves seniors from Irish Beach to Stewarts Point.
“I didn’t want to sit around all summer,” she said. “The volunteering was flexible and it sounded nice to help.”
“I hope that I will be able to connect with them,” she said of the seniors who drop by for meals and company. “I think I am pretty easygoing.”
That’s the attitude Curlee’s volleyball coach sees in her.
Jeanine Stefani, who coaches varsity volleyball at Point Arena High, where Curlee will be a junior this year, also coaches club volleyball and has seen Curlee pick up the sport with determination over the past two years.
“She is not my strongest athlete, but she is great to coach; she comes early, she volunteers,” she said. “She is a developing athlete. She has a super great personality, she’s interested in learning more, she’s responsive.”
Curlee has played junior varsity volleyball, mostly as a strong side hitter, but hopes to make the varsity squad this year.
She also participates in the high school’s newly revived cheerleading squad and maintains a 4.0 grade point average.
Curlee excels at science and wants to get back into music lessons. She took piano lessons from fourth to eighth grade and is thinking of taking up guitar.
The cheer squad, which was defunct for some years, has re-emerged as a dance-focused team, Curlee said.
“My mom cheered when she was in high school so she always kind of wanted me to do that,” she said.
Curlee said attending a small high school — Point Arena High has about 150 students — has allowed her to dabble in different interests and try new activities.
“I think I get to try more things,” she said. “And you get a chance to connect with your teachers.”
Perhaps that is where Curlee’s current career ambition comes from. She’s thinking of pursuing a career in youth counseling or perhaps teaching.