On a chilly Saturday morning in Beaverton, a local branch of Wells Fargo bank was in the midst of a heated competition. Paired with Trail Blazers season ticket holders, broadcasters Mike Rice, Mike Barrett and Brian Wheeler battled to fill donation barrels with food for Oregon Food Bank.
Members of Rip City United were invited to stop by with non-perishable food in support of their ticket level in the Rose Garden. Barrett captained the 100 Level, Wheels the 200 Level and Rice the 300-level season ticket holders. As the hours ticked by the three jockeyed back and forth for the lead. In what was thought to be a winning donation, a 100-level season ticket holder filled Barrett’s barrel after a successful Costco run. Her donated even included cookies for the broadcasters, which Rice enjoyed immensely.
For much of the morning it looked like Barrett and the 100 Level had the competition locked up.
“I’ve had a lot fewer donators but they’ve come packed and with pickups. I’m still ahead and it’s getting to be nervous time. I may disappear and come back with a little myself to push me over the top,” Barrett said. “They were wise to do a competition because they know how competitive Mike Rice and Wheels are, so I’m doing okay so far. We’ll see when the medals are handed out where I stand on the podium.”
But with about 20 minutes left the 300 Level roared back to gain the lead. One season ticket holder donated $60 that was promptly raced over to the neighboring Fred Meyer and spent on loads of food. Following the monster donation there was no catching Rice and the upper bowl participants.
The two-hour competition resulted in four barrels filled with more than 700 non-perishable items. Rice did his “V for victory” pose with all of his donations after gratefully accepting a win on behalf of 300-level Rip City United Members.
“It’s like the Trail Blazers Harvest Dinner, you know it’s going to people that really need it in our difficult economic times. You look for ways to help other people in society and the Blazers have just done a marvelous job,” Rice said. “With Wells Fargo and the Blazers this canned food drive has really been good through the years and it’s especially good this year because I’m gonna beat Barrett and Brian Wheeler. The 300 Level really has come through for, I shouldn’t say Mike Rice, for the Blazers this year.”
The real winners in the announcers’ quest for glory are the thousands served by Oregon Food Bank. So, THANK YOU Rip City United and all those who have helped Can Hunger and make it better
for our neighbors in need. If you’d still like to donate, bring any canned food or non-perishable items to your local Portland-area Wells Fargo store through Friday, November 18th.