Softball takes part in 'Back to School Parade'
Aug. 31, 2010
Hey Texas fans --
It's great to have the team back in Austin, along with our five newcomers. The first thing we did when we got back was help our new teammates move into the dorms and get settled. We also kicked off the new year with a big `family' dinner, which was a great way for all of us to get together for the first time. After everyone was all moved in, we were able to reach out to the community and share in a great experience for our first team event all together.
On Sunday, Aug. 22, Austin celebrated the beginning of another school year with the "Back to School Parade," and families from throughout the community were invited to join. It was a celebration that included plenty of food and music, allowing everyone there to enjoy the fun. The parade ended at Bartholomew Park, where our entire team joined in to help distribute back packs filled with school supplies. With the supplies donated by surrounding area businesses and organizations, there were more than enough supplies to benefit those in need.
Although it was a typical, hot afternoon, a couple hundred children came with their families to participate in the event. We joined in with several other volunteers to help direct the kids to their supplies or to hand them backpacks or other supplies. A lot of us stood at the front gate to welcome the families in and then walk with them to their tables, but Taylor Hoagland might have had the best idea, because she decided to just hang out at one of the tables under an umbrella to hand out backpacks.
It was a great experience for all of us because we were able to join in with a great cause to help those in need, but also have the opportunity to meet and interact with some of the kids in the community. I met one family with four children, ranging from first grade to 10th grade, who were all a little timid when they first got there, but after they all received their supplies, you could tell how appreciative they were and excited to begin their new school year. The youngest, a boy entering into first grade, spent the entire time that I was walking with his family telling me how glad he was to go to school and see some of his friends, and that he was having fun, but he wished there was more shade because it was too hot! I definitely agreed with him on that.
This was also important for our newcomers to help serve in the community before our classes even started. We were all grateful to get to participate in the event, but also had a lot of fun talking with the other volunteers as well as the families. There were also plenty of fans there, too, and it was great to see their support and excitement for the upcoming season.