The Marietta Middle School football team will be sporting a dapper look on the gridiron this season.
"We're buying new uniforms for the kids," said first-year MHS interim head coach Bob Springer. "And, it will be uniforms that fit them, not hand me down stuff."
The football attire was made possible by the River Rats Browns Backers, who recently donated $2,500 to the Marietta Touchdown Club. Also benefitting from the Browns Backers' generosity was the Boys & Girls Club of Washington County.
"Everything is good and going on for the good of everyone involved," said River Rats Browns Backers event coordinator Barry Taylor.
Earlier this month, money was raised at the eighth annual River Rats Browns Backers celebrity golf tournament, which was held at the Lakeside Golf Course in Beverly. There, several former National Football players - most of them Browns - were matched up with community members in a scramble format on the links.
At its inception in 1993, the River Rats Browns Backers, with Doug McVay as president, was a group of local fans, who socialized and viewed their beloved Cleveland Browns on TV. The club even had its own room in the back of the No Idea Sports Lounge at the Comfort Inn in Marietta.
Over time, the River Rats Browns Backers club evolved and became more involved in charity works of which the annual golf event at Lakeside is the largest. The organization's community service has also included donating money to the Washington County Relay For Life, purchasing Christmas presents for a family through Washington County Job and Family Services, giving money to the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club, and sending care packages to U.S. service people stationed in Iraq.
"The Browns Backers and Mr. Taylor are wonderful folks," Springer said. "They took a lot of time with our kids at the golf course, and everyone had a wonderful time.
"I was especially impressed with a private message Browns running back Bo Scott delivered to a group of kids, 'Work hard, listen to your parents, listen to your coaches, and work hard.' The group of ex-Browns were really special guys."
Ron Johnston is the Marietta Times sports editor, and can be reached at 376-5441 or at firstname.lastname@example.org