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Catonsville High two-sport athlete Hayden Kesner finishes job on field and with artwork

Catonsville High two-sport athlete Hayden Kesner stays busy with all her crafts at home.
Catonsville High two-sport athlete Hayden Kesner stays busy with all her crafts at home. (Photo courtesy fo Hayden Kesner)

Whether scoring on the lacrosse or field hockey turf or completing a custom-designed mosaic, Catonsville High’s Hayden Kesner is determined to finish the job quickly and successfully.

“I have this thing in my head where I can’t stop until I finish, so whenever I’m on the field, I can’t stop that play or that momentum without knowing that there is going to be a goal toward the end,” Kesner said. “So when I do my artwork, I don’t stop until I finish my piece.”

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Those pieces might be mosaics with school colors and logos, customized tree charms and many other creations.

“I got into it about two years ago in school,” Kesner said. “I started my business about a year and a half ago.”

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Her company is HaySimplicity, and although she sells tree charms on the Etsy website, she sells mosaics at her Catonsville home because they are fragile and more delicate to ship.

“At first, it started out with painting shoes and everything and I kind of didn’t want to go that course anymore because I wasn’t really enjoying it, so that’s when I decided to start bringing out the mosaics and stuff which are really fun to make and they are all unique and it was really cool,” said Kesner, who brainstormed with her mom, Melissa, for a name for her company.

This is one of the popular 2020 mosaics designed by Catonsville High senior Hayden Kesner. Kesner was one of four students to receive the school's Outstanding Achievement in Visual Arts award.
This is one of the popular 2020 mosaics designed by Catonsville High senior Hayden Kesner. Kesner was one of four students to receive the school's Outstanding Achievement in Visual Arts award. (Photo courtesy of Hayden Kesner)

“I wanted it to be something that when people hear it they would be interested in what I do and I wanted it to be simple and everything be unique and one of a kind. So I took Hay from Hayden and I added Simplicity to it and it all merged together,” she said. “Almost every single one of my orders is custom and it’s unique to that person.”

Catonsville lacrosse coach Cantey Bailey got a gift from Kesner after the 2019 season.

“She is unbelievable,” Bailey said. “Last year she gave the coaches sea glass tree charms and put a little lacrosse stick at the end and mine sits in my garden and I love it.”

On the field, Kesner started every game in 2019 on attack and scored 19 goals and had eight assists.

Catonsville High's Hayden Kesner scored 18 goals and had nine assists last season for the Comets.
Catonsville High's Hayden Kesner scored 18 goals and had nine assists last season for the Comets. (Photo courtesy of Hayden Kesner)

She was primed to be a playmaker this spring before the coronavirus pandemic closed schools and wiped out the regular season.

Did the time away from school and playing lacrosse give her more time to expand her custom designs?

“Absolutely. I spend almost every single day doing some kind of piece because I have so many orders that I have to fulfill and I don’t like making people wait," she said.

Waiting for a lacrosse season that never came was difficult for Kesner, knowing that the Comets had the talent to go deep into the postseason.

“It was very hard in the aspect that I grew extremely close with all of my coaches, so it was one of those things that I was really upset with losing those connections and stuff,” Kesner said.

“I had grown up with a majority of the girls. So we’ve all played together for years gone by and so that’s also really hard, thinking about that I’ll never get to play with those girls again.”

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The top three seniors on the squad are headed for Division I lacrosse programs — Lindsey Marshall (Towson), Kolby Weedon (St. Joseph’s) and Sophi Wrisk (Maryland).

“I think we could have gone so far this year and it really stinks, but we weren’t given the opportunity. But it’s definitely helped my art, given the little break,” Kesner said.

Kesner will play field hockey at St. Mary’s College in the fall and hopes to continue her scoring role on attack and plans to major in environmental sciences and minor in some kind of art.

Last fall in field hockey, she scored 19 goals, including four in the second half of a 6-2 win over Franklin and had a hat trick in a 4-0 senior-night triumph over Perry Hall.

She was honorable mention All-State, first-team All-County and first-team All-Academic.

“I loved both sports and I love playing both, but I’ve always been more confident when it comes to field hockey. So in that aspect it was really easy to decide because it was just the sport I had the most fun playing,” she said. “I know I am going to miss playing lacrosse and having a stick in my hand all the time and the adrenaline I get after scoring a goal.”

This spring she designed a big stepping stone with CVGL on it, and Bailey is going to have each player on the lacrosse team sign it.

Hayden Kesner designed this gift to commemorate the 2020 Catonsville girls lacrosse team that never played a regular-season game.
Hayden Kesner designed this gift to commemorate the 2020 Catonsville girls lacrosse team that never played a regular-season game. (Photo courtesy of Hayden Kesner)

“She could have played lacrosse in college, but field hockey is her true passion, so I’m glad that she is able to play that in college,” Bailey said.

Field hockey coach Barbara Bates saw how she could rally the team.

“She was one of the team captains and she had a lot of leadership qualities,” Bates said.

Kesner was also not afraid to take on new challenges. When Iamp’s at Jennings Café on Frederick Road was looking for more tables for outside dining, she responded.

“They are doing all new tables and stuff and they asked if local artists could make table tops for them, so I’m doing a piece for them,” she said.

Her most popular items recently have been the 2020 mosaics and signs for college students.

“I haven’t had the same college or dorm name or university name at all lately,” said Kesner, who made one for St. Mary’s. “I made one so far and it wasn’t even for me. I still need to make myself one.”

Another job she will no doubt finish quickly.

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