SCIOTOVILLE — In the latter part of July, most children in Scioto County are trying to enjoy what is left of their quickly fading summer vacation, however, a group of nearly 40 student-athletes from Sciotoville East High School’s football team spent one of their Friday mornings of summer vacation making their community a better place.
Friday morning, July 22, 2016, members of the East Tartans football team made their way all throughout Sciotoville picking up trash and litter. The Tartans blanketed their community with gloves and trash bags in hand as they eliminated unsightly droppings from the streets of Sciotoville.
“Our players got together and they’ve realized what this community does for them and they wanted to give back,” East football coach James Gifford said. “This year was just an absolute awesome turnout.”
Nearly 40 members of the Tartan football team participated in Friday’s community work day.
“They were going around the community picking up trash and stuff,” Gifford said.
This was the second year many of the team members had participated in the event. Last year, marked the first year the team came together in Sciotoville to clean up the community. In 2014, the Tartans picked up trash at Bannon Park in Portsmouth and spent time in the park playing with neighborhood children.
“This year we were able to wear our Tartan gear, which was donated to us and sponsored by Matt and Josie Collier of Collier Safety Services, also Mike Scott of Scotty’s Satellites, Trent and Tony Knittel and Focus Residential’s Mike and Kelly Gifford,” Gifford said. “They all gave towards our shirts.
The sponsors raised about $2,500 to pay for the Tartan gear shirts for the team to wear.
Being able to wear their Tartan gear allowed members of the community to see exactly who was traveling the streets of the small community in the eastern part of Scioto County.
Team members, including coaches started canvasing the area at about 9:00 a.m. Friday morning and finished about two and a half hours later.
“We were able to get the complete town of Sciotoville,” Gifford said. “We had great participation. They’re great young men and I’m proud of every one of them.”
Litter and trash, along with a spare tire one group found and some loose branches blown away from several trees were just some of the things the Tartans removed from the streets and sidewalks of Sciotoville.
Gifford estimates that around 40 landscape-sized bags of trash were removed from the community. The trash bags and gloves were provided to the team by the Sciotoville Preservation Society. Gifford also said Sixth Ward City Councilman Tom Lowe arranged for the trash to disposed after being picked up by the team.
Later Friday, the team will be having a team camp out.
“We’re just going to have some good fellowship with the team and build team chemistry,” Gifford said. “I’m a firm believer that yes, you want to win the game and (scoring) points, but football is a lot more than just winning and the points. You’ve got to learn how to become a family and play together and carry it the rest of your life.”
Reach Michael Hamilton at 740-353-3101, ext 1931, or on Twitter @MikeHamilton82.