Help send a local child to the Gator Bowl game

1,100 local children will attend college football game on New Year's Day

By Jennifer Waugh - The Morning Show anchor, I-Team reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Chase Bank is partnering with the Gator Bowl Association to help send 1,100 local children to the Gator Bowl on New Year's Day. You can help make this happen for a child who otherwise would never be able to afford a ticket to attend a college football game.

Chase will match any corporate or individual contribution that is made to the Gator Bowl's Send a Child to the Game Program, up to $15,000. It is $75 to sponsor a child and $3,000 for an entire bus of children.

"We feed them on the Jaguar practice facility, take them around, show them the inside, backdoor of the stadium and give them an experience that hopefully they will remember the rest of their lives," said Rick Catlett, president and CEO of the Gator Bowl Association.

The program has helped 7,000 children attend the New Year's Day game for the last six years.

"I'll never forget, it really started when Mayor (John) Delaney told me, he said his first experience with his father at a sporting event was the Gator Bowl," Catlett said. "That spawned us to say, 'How can we make sure the people of Jacksonville, their children, have an opportunity to experience a major college football game?' and came up with this program."

Local nonprofit organizations provide names to the Gator Bowl Association of children they think should be given the opportunity to attend the game.

"For us, this is a great showcase for our community. The game is high-quality college football," said Michael Butler, of Chase Bank. "It provides positive economic impact to our community, so combining that event with the opportunity to give deserving children that might not be able to attend the game an experience of a lifetime is a winning competition for us."

You can donate by calling the Gator Bowl office at 904-798-1700 or by clicking here for the association's website.

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