By Jeremy McDonald
KEIZER, Ore.– With the Youth Football Team splitting time on the Football field, current McNary Celtic Junior Walling and a few of his teammates were hanging out, floating around the annual Blue Day festivities on home turf and enjoying the community support from the Keizer community.
Watching the younger kids made him remember being out there himself playing with the high schoolers watching Walling and company play, something that has let him appreciate the smaller things with football.
“I appreciate it a lot, especially watching,” said Walling watching the future Celts scrimmage in front of him. “I remember being out here with all the older kids, it’s sweet.”
McNary Athletic Booster Club President Danielle Bethnell, who too has a son playing football with the Celtics on the Junior Varsity squad in Joel Knight,
“To be honest, this is my sixth-year planning Blue Day and its probably the biggest highlight fir me to start year,” said Bethell on putting on the event. “I think bringing the community out in a big way from the young kids to the seniors. Letting them all work together n the same vicinity. I think it really brings out what Keizer is all about. There’s a lot of spirit out here.”
As from a parents-perspective, the chance to help her son and his future school out in some way even before he arrived in High School was an opportunity she takes a lot of pride in.
“For me, it’s exactly why I do what I do,” said Bethell. “I started on the Booster Club before even my son was even in High School because I wanted to make sure that he had great things to utilized (and) the tools to use for the things that he loves and I get excited.
“Yesterday, I was out here for pictures and I was just excited to be on the field with all of the football players, getting them all organized and their excitement. But I have a lot of pride in it and of course I’m really proud to be a mom and I love that my son is out here loving his youth.”
In 2017, it was too the first-time that the Celtic Cross Country team made an appearance as first-year Head Coach David Holcomb.
“This is Cross Country’s first-year doing it so it’s pretty cool. I’m excited, we’re just getting introduced and recognized which is always good because people don’t usually like watching running,” said Kailey Doutt. “It’s going to be fun.”
“We got a lot of new faces and a lot of freshman that came out,” adds Doutt on the team. “Mr. Holcomb, our new coach, he did a lot of recruiting because he’s actually in the school. We haven’t had a coach that was in the school for awhile. So we got a lot of new people and we’re hoping to do a lot better than last year at Districts because there’s a lot of good talent coming out.”
As the morning grew on into afternoon with Soccer, Lacrosse and Football taking over on the field to wrap up the day, the fun of the day with the community will last with those out on the field will continue beyond just today.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald