June 12, 2007
Americus -- Six-foot-eight inch Leonard Pope has always had a big spot in his heart for his hometown of Americus.
His draft party last April was basically a block party for the entire town.
"I love Americus, Georgia," says Pope. "They've always been behind me 100%. I want to show everyone I really do care, and I'm really trying to do something right now."
Pope is looking to help out in a big way this weekend, hosting an All-Star weekend to benefit the Sumter Regional Hospital and surrounding area affected by the tornado in March.
The Cardinals tight end is bringing in nine other NFL players, including Anquan Boldin, Charles Grant, and Ronnie Brown to help raise money for the community.
Pope says, "They're really showing their love for me right now, because they know I'm in a small town, and they're just really trying to help me right now."
Pope says having such a large NFL contingent in a small town will a big impact on the city of Americus.
"We're in a small town, and lot of people haven't been around those types of guys, pro players," says Pope. "We're really going to try to have a nice time this weekend, have everybody come in and just have a lot of fun."
The All-Star weekend features and charity golf tournament and black-tie dinner Friday, and a basketball game at the South Georgia Tech Gym at 2pm on Saturday.
More information can be found by contacting Nadine Pope (229-942-5173) or Marcus Johnson (229-944-1128) or visiting www.sumterregional.org