Story and photos by Mark Carpenter –
Thanks to the penmanship talents of Mr. Ed Salsbury and a grant of $10,000 from the Cincinnati bengals and the NFL Foundation, Freedom Field in West Union will look a lot brighter to football fans this fall. Because of the grant writing ability of Salsbury and the hard work of the West Union football program in building from the ground up, the program was able to purchase eight lighting towers which will be in place for the 2016 season.
“The lighting allows us to have Friday Night Football under the lights as well as the elementary football championship games at night,” said Scott McFarland, West Union’s varsity coach and one of the main organizers from the beginning of the Dragon football program.
Here is the text of the official release from the Bengals and the NFL:
As a part of their commitment to Greater Cincinnati, the Bengals and NFL Foundation have teamed up to recognize organizations that stand out for their commitment to our community. The Bengals distributed $80,000 to eight area charities in recognition of their work in Greater Cincinnati.
Three groups (American Heart Association, Cincinnati YMCA and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Cincinnati) were recognized with grants from the NFL Play 60 program, which encourages youth to be active for 60 minutes each day in order to combat childhood obesity.
Two groups (Salvation Army and Armed Forces Ticket Association – AFTA) were recognized for their volunteer work in the community. AFTA is a long-time partner of the Bengals, through which the Club has donated more than $200,000 worth of tickets to Bengals games over the past two years.
Two youth football organizations, West Union Football Organization and Madeira Schools Foundation, were recognized for their commitment to developing the sport at the grassroots level.
Finally, the Good Samaritan Hospital Foundation was awarded $5000 to assist women in need of access to free mammograms.
“Greater Cincinnati is blessed with many charities that help make our community better,” said Katie Blackburn, Bengals Executive Vice President. “Large or small, each one touches people in need. We are proud to be associated with these organizations and appreciate the work they do each and every day”.