Bearcat Football Players Will Help with United Way Days of Caring for Fourth Year in a Row

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- The Willamette University football team will participate in the United Way Days of Caring for the fourth consecutive year when more than 100 Bearcats work to beautify Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, Aug. 18. Willamette’s football players will open the Days of Caring, which are sponsored by the United Way of the Mid-Willamette Valley.

Due to the team‘s practice schedule, the Bearcats will help out the community nearly a week before other local groups contribute to the Days of Caring on Friday, August 24 and Saturday, Aug. 25 Overall, 334 corporate and civic volunteers will participate in single-day service projects to clean up and improve buildings and landscapes at public locations and health and human service organizations in the Salem area.

Head Coach Mark Speckman, his assistant coaches and the Willamette football team will form a group of approximately 115 workers at Bush’s Pasture Park. The team will volunteer its efforts from 8:30 a.m. until about 11:45 a.m. The Bearcats will clean up trails throughout the park, clear ivy where needed and place bark chips and/or bark dust at various locations. Involvement with the Days of Caring has formed a key part of the football team’s community service efforts since 2004.

In previous years, the Bearcats have worked in groups of about 10 players each and have been assigned to several venues on the same day. This is the first time the entire team will be working at one site.

Willamette football players work near McKay High School during the Days of Caring in 2006.

Willamette football players work near McKay High School during the Days of Caring in 2006.