It was a nice way to literally “warm up” for what was ahead. The first workout of the Blondes vs. Brunettes (BvB) took place on Sunday, June 3, at Glencoe Park with both teams in attendance along with their coaches and Mike Spencer, who heads up the Greater Dallas Chapter of the Alzheimer Association that benefits from the August 11th all-gals-touch-football game.
Mike admitted that when he started in his position a year ago, he just thought of the event as a simple powder puff football game. No big deal. Then he attended the game at Ownby Stadium and changed his attitude dramatically. At one point he was worried that they were going to have to pull the players apart. Instead of makeup, these gals wore war paint.
Since Dallas BvB started five years ago, hundreds of thousands of dollars have gone directly to the efforts to combat Alzheimer’s. Aiming to break the million-dollar total mark this year, they’ve set a goal $275,000.
Mike told the assembled 20-ish and 30-ish players and coaches, “Because of you guys, we’re sending two Alzheimer’s researchers (from Dallas) to Vancouver, B.C., in July. We couldn’t do it without you.”
For some like Blonde co-chairs five-year vet Brooke Fawcett and four-year coach Axel Garrido, it was old home week, knowing full well that the weekly practices leading up to the big game at the Cotton Bowl were going to be hotter than the fryers at the State Fair.
For first-timers, it was sorta a wide-eyed look of, “What have I gotten myself into?” Well, maybe it was wide-eyed. It was sorta hard to see any eyes hidden under sunglasses. But shoot, the sun hadn’t set and the Glencoe bleachers were facing west.
After four previous games, BvB President/Co-chair/founder/mother hen Erin Finegold, the team captains and coaches had answers to all questions. They’d seen everything over the years including the night the lights went out at Highland Stadium prematurely just before the fourth quarter was a done deal.
They, like the players and coaches, also had reasons for giving up at least one night a week throughout the summer to raise funding for research and education about Alzheimer’s. While all are years and decades away from possibly suffering from the debilitating disease, many have seen the suffering and experienced the loss resulting from a disease that is growing in numbers as the baby boomers become AARP members. For instance, BvB Co-chair Katie Hicks is in her third year of playing in the name of her grandfather, who died on May 10, 2010, and Blonde player Rachael Piper lost her Uncle Buzz recently. As Rachael put it, “I’ve devoted my time to this cause because frankly, my dear, I give a damn.”
But on this Sunday the two teams were there to experience that first workout — the only one in which both teams would be together. They broke up blending hair colors into six groups around the Glencoe Park field.
One of the first things that became obvious was the coaches were not cutting the lovely ladies any slack because “they’re girls.” One gal, whose future is not in professional football, lamely tossed the ball to a teammate. The attending coach’s comment: “You’ll be on defense.”
If you’re interested in observing the workouts at Glencoe Park, the Blondes will be there on Wednesdays and the Brunettes on Sundays. Or better yet, join current sponsors Bud Light, Camp Gladiator, Ebby Halliday Companies, Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket, The Biz and WFAA-CH. 8 as a sponsor. Still, if your credit line can’t quite muster up a sponsorship, plan on saving up $25 to attend the August 11 game. It will definitely be hot stuff.
BTW, the BvB website is a favorite around MSC. Not only does it have all the usual bells and whistles like why the organization exists, the schedule, etc., it also has a brief bio on each player and coach plus a scale showing their progress in their individual fund raising goals. It also shows the overall progress as they work to meet their target of $275,000. As of today, they’ve raised $44,340.
Oh, and did we mention that this Saturday Team Blonde is having a pool party at IMT Seville, 2626 Reagan? For $10 you get to hang out with the players and enjoy beer and pizza from noon to 5 p.m.