Did you end up on the “naughty” list this year? The pickings a little slim under the tree? Well, that does not mean you do not deserve something nice this holiday season.
Being a sports fan, what better gift than some game tickets? Mobile has many athletic events from which to choose, including the upcoming GoDaddy Bowl and the Senior Bowl at Ladd-Peebles Stadium.
Down the road, we cannot forget about the Mobile BayBears, who have made the Southern League playoffs five straight seasons — including a pair of league championships. And there is also the LPGA tournament at Magnolia Grove golf course; that is if the issues putting it on the “tentative” schedule are resolved in time.
Glancing at the Internet turns up a plethora of great ideas. For the Who Dat Nation, there is the Saints Superfan Poker Deck from Big Easy Mafia. Pulling for the Saints has always been a gamble, just like this card game.
Auburn is offering a football fantasy camp next year for males, at least 21 years old, on May 1-2. The event is for “football gurus” to “Sunday morning quarterbacks” who are interested in spending two days with Coach Gus Malzahn and his staff for a weekend of fellowship and story-telling plus offensive and defensive meetings. Be ready to open the checkbook, though, as the event can cost up to $3,700 when the hotel and golf packages are added.
All fans like to tailgate. Kraft Foods is offering Jell-O molds featuring numerous NCAA team logos. These can be perfect for the kids, or for those special “adult” Jell-O shots.
For the jewelry lover, the Uncommon Goods website is offering cufflinks made with University of Alabama football helmets that were used in games. The description said finishes may vary because of the age and uniqueness of each Crimson Tide headgear.
Do you like to get down and dirty? Or do you just like dirt? If you go to MLB.com, you can purchase dirt used at the 2014 All-Star Game at Target Field in Minneapolis. If you prefer another all-star game, you have your choice back to 2009. Also for baseball fans is a reproduction of the infamous “10-cent Beer Night” T-shirt that honors the 1974 drunken riot that erupted at Cleveland Municipal Stadium when the Indians played the Texas Rangers.
Other interesting items are the Garmin Edge 1000, the latest bike computer that offers mapping, directions and live tracking; the GoPro HERO4 Silver, the latest edition of the popular action camera that features an LCD touch screen; and the Sony Waterproof Walkman, which is certified to 2 meters in depth.
For the ladies, there are the Adidas Climaheat Rocket Boost Shoes, which feature a midsole to add an unseasonable spring to your step and insulated uppers for the toes; and the Nike Elite Lightweight No-Show tab socks, which are sweat-wicking, friction-reducing, snuggly fitting apparel. Especially good if your Christmas stocking won’t fit your foot.
The gift of giving
As Bob Hope once said, “If you haven’t any charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble.” Fortunately, several groups have stepped up during the holiday season to help their fellow citizens.
Last week prior to the Camellia Bowl, USA President Tony Waldrop, members of the university’s Board of Trustees and the executive administration volunteered at the Montgomery Area Food Bank. They helped to prepare food for distribution at the group’s warehouse.
Earlier this year during the first USA National Alumni Association’s “Jaguars Care” day of service event, faculty, staff, alumni and students helped to prepare food for distribution at our own Mobile Bay Area Food Bank.
Spring Hill College’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee has made a difference. The entire roster of varsity SHC student-athletes collected canned goods to stock a local food pantry. They got more than 1,000 cans of vital foodstuffs that were delivered to the Catholic Social Services Food Bank.
The University of South Alabama’s SAAC group has also been busy with service projects. They collected complimentary shampoos, conditioners, body wash, lotions and other hygienic and household items from Jaguar teams that had been on the road, and from campus and neighborhood donations. The items were all turned over to L’Arche Mobile, a Christian community started in 1974 that shares life with people who have intellectual disabilities.
Another great cause
Speaking of L’Arche Mobile, the 14th annual First Light Marathon sponsored by ServisFirst Bank is taking place Sunday, Jan. 11, in downtown Mobile. The event, which is presented by the Mobile Sports Authority, is coordinated by and benefits L’Arche Mobile.
The schedule includes a 26.2-mile race, a 13.1-mile run and a 5-person relay, starting at 7:30 a.m. at Government and Claiborne streets. The 1.2-mile fun run starts at 2 p.m. at the corner of Conception and St. Francis streets.
The finish line for all races is at Bienville Square. During the last 13 years, this event had had more than 22,000 participants and 6,500 volunteers, with visitors from all 50 states and 15 countries. For more information, call 251-438-2094 or visit www.firstlightmarathon.com.
Sports physicals set
The Baldwin Bone & Joint orthopedic group is preparing to provide sports physical exams to more than 500 middle and high school athletes on Saturday, Jan. 10, from 8 to 11:30 a.m.
This service, provided annually for all student athletes, will take place at their Daphne office, located at 1505 Daphne Ave. (County Road 64, corner of Daphne Avenue and Pollard Road).
The schedule is as follows: 8-9 a.m., Daphne High; 9-10 a.m., Daphne Middle; 10-11 a.m., Baldwin County High; 11-11:30 a.m., Baldwin County Middle; 11-11:30 a.m., open to all other schools.
These exams are mandatory for students preparing to play in competitive sports during the 2015 academic year. The cost is $15, and payment may be made in cash or by credit card.
Certified athletic trainers from Baldwin Bone & Joint provide sports medicine coverage to several local school athletic teams. The physicians, fellowship-trained and specializing in sports medicine, serve as team orthopedic doctors, as well.
Athletes interested in the exams should contact their athletic director for information on their school’s allotted times. For more information, call 251-625-BONE (2663).