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Turkey Bowl 2011: Once-small annual fundraiser collects $125,000

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MEDINA TWP. — Participants of an annual backyard football game fought a soggy field on a sunny Thanksgiving Day morning to raise more than $100,000 for local folks in need of a helping hand.

The 22nd annual Meadows Turkey Bowl kicked off about 8:30 a.m. Thursday at the home of Mike Meadows at 3075 Hood Road. The football tournament included four teams of 11 players, who raised money from sponsors to go toward the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Medina.

“It’s an awesome day and fun to come out here for a good cause,” said Bob Cureton, a player for the winning Green Team. “I can’t believe we were able to raise that much money.”

Money raised for St. Vincent de Paul totaled $125,000, and Tom Rebescher, president of the society, accepted the check following the championship game.

The football matchup dates back to 1989 and is a major fundraising event in Medina County, with most of the proceeds benefiting the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Meadows said.

Last year, the Turkey Bowl brought in about $90,000 for the society, which helped to feed, clothe and offer funds for home heating to many needy folks in Medina County.

A portion of the money raised from this year’s Turkey Bowl via the St. Vincent de Paul Society will benefit the family of area resident Jeff Thomas, who was in a serious car accident last summer, Meadows said. Thomas and his family should receive $15,500.

The eight captains for the 2011 Turkey Bowl were Al Melchiorre and Bill Meadows, Tom Judson and John Cassidy, Tim and Terry Blascak, and Erin Cureton and Mike Biskup.

Thursday’s victor was the Green Team, which narrowly beat the White Team 8 to7 in the championship match.

“It’s a dream and humbling to play this game,” Tim Blascak, of the White Team, said after the final game. “Even later today when you can’t move from being so sore, it’s an honor to come out.”

Corporate sponsors for the 2011 Turkey Bowl included Hyde Park Steakhouse, the Cleveland Indians and Weymouth Golf Club.

Contact Steve Grazier at (330) 721-4012 or sgrazier@medina-gazette.com.



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