The stars of the show yesterday were supposed to be wide receiver Sam Giguere and defensive back Jamie Silva. But the real star of the show wasn't sitting on the stage signing autographs.
Meet Mike, an employee for Carey Services of Marion a non-profit organization that provides housing, employment, education and support services to disabled persons. Mike brought three clients to meet the players and cheerleaders and take in all the MIP Tour has to offer.
"For most people they don't think twice about it because they see the Colts everyday," Mike said. "To my clients it just makes their day and they just so enjoy coming out. When they brought the Super Bowl trophy to Marion I think we brought 50 to 100 people from Carey and they were just so excited. It is something they will relish forever."
Mike isn't going to stop making memories for his clients anytime soon. This season he is taking seven to a preseason game and says they can't wait for the opportunity to take in a game in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Mike and his clients were in a line that stretched around the parking lot as hundreds of fans were on hand to meet Giguere, a Canadian native, and Silva, a Providence, R.I. native who appeared in 14 games last season.
"It is great to see the fans," Giguere said. "I haven't had the chance to travel through Indiana so it is really nice to come out and see the different places and meet the different fans. We don't get a lot of opportunities to touch base with fans outside of Indy."
When asked what he most enjoyed about the fans it was an easy question to answer.
"I love talking to the kids," Giguere said. "I remember when I was a kid and wanted to become a professional football player and then you see them coming up and they are thinking and dreaming the same and it is great to share that with them."
On top of getting autographs, fans had the opportunity to stop by nearly a dozen sponsor tents, enjoy the mountain slide and bounce house inflatables, register to win free preseason tickets, climb the rock wall and walk through the Colts In Motion traveling museum.
The MIP Tour will make its final two stops of the summer traveling to Lafayette today followed by Fair Oaks Farm tomorrow. For more information on the tour head to mycolts.net and check out my (MIPInternCJ) blog.