The Gift of Giving Back

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Heap of Hope 2009

As part of his effort to raise $1M for The Todd Heap Family Pediatric Center at Franklin Square Hospital, tight end Todd Heap hosted an auction event on Monday (11/30). Heap balanced duties as host and MC, taking the microphone to honor wide receiver Derrick Mason for his outstanding community impact.

Attendees enjoyed dinner, mingled with Heap's teammates including quarterback John Beck, guard Ben Grubbs, tackle David Hale, tackle Michael Oher and tight end Quinn Sypniewski. Guests also opened up their pocket books for a good cause. Game-used jerseys worn by Joe Flacco and Todd Heap each brought in over $2,000.

Proving it is better to give than to receive, live auction participants were generous with their bids. One item on the auction block was a two-hour appearance by Heap. The tight end sweetened the deal by adding Michael Oher to the mix. The winner pledged over $13,000 to spend time with the duo helping Heap move closer to the one million dollar mark.

A Penny War with a Purpose

In a true demonstration of what the Holidays are about, students at Arundel Middle School participated in a fundraiser competition to benefit nose tackle Brandon McKinney's foundation, B.J.'s Kids 91. Based in Dayton, Ohio, the Michigan State product's foundation annually hosts a celebratory back-to-school event in Dayton for more than 500 youth where youth receive school supplies and free haircuts.

On Tuesday(12/1), the highest earning class, the sixth graders, presented McKinney with the result of their generosity: a check for over $700. McKinney graciously accepted the contribution and informed the students on his intention to bring his charitable efforts to Baltimore.

After a Q&A session where the students learned about McKinney and the Ravens, the nose tackle channeled Alex Trebek (sans mustache) in a football version of Jeopardy!. For "Final Jeopardy," McKinney asked the group questions about himself.

Arundel Middle School will host another school-wide rally recognizing their charitable efforts. Since the Ravens beat the Steelers, the school's principal will be duct taped to the wall at the assembly. Looks like the Ravens won on all accounts.

Tell Me a Story

"Win one for the Gipper" is a common sports phrase used to spark teams on to victory. The students of Ms. Mann's fourth grade class at Warren Elementary learned more about this inspiration adage when running back Jalen Parmele stopped by on Tuesday to read Kathy-Jo Wargin's "Win One for the Gipper."

After sharing the story with the students, Parmele told his young audience about his inspiration for playing. One of 10 children, Parmele was influenced by his older brother Chris' drive and determination as a football player at Central Michigan. The running back tried numerous sports in high school including track, soccer and baseball. The Ravens are fortunate that the multi-talented athlete excelled at football and is in Baltimore making an impact both on, and off, the field.

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