INDIANAPOLIS – When Colts DE Cory Redding isn't making plays on the football field, he is busy making a difference in his community. Redding hosted 33 families to his annual holiday shopping event for local families in need at the Pike Plaza Meijer store on Tuesday, December 17, 2013. The families, from Concord Neighborhood Center and Ronald McDonald House of Indianapolis, were initially told it would be a fun family night out hosted by the Colts. However, as Redding was introduced at the event, he surprised each of the families with $1,000 to spend at Meijer, courtesy of Redding, Colts Owner and CEO Jim Irsay and several of Redding's teammates.
To begin the event, families enjoyed a private party with Papa John's Pizza, snacks and beverages. After dinner, Redding greeted the participants and announced that because of the $33,000 raised, each family would receive a $1,000 Meijer gift card to spend on items needed or desired. A round of applause and cheers filled the room as families were in shock of the donation they were receiving.
After posing for group photos with Redding, the families entered the store to begin their one hour shopping spree! Redding was joined by OLB Robert Mathis, WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, RB Chris Rainey and G Justin Anderson, in addition to Colts Cheerleaders, to help the families shop and pick out items.
Throughout the evening, personal stories of deep gratitude were shared by families who simply were pleased to stock up on necessities such as shoes, warm clothes and toiletries. One participating family from New York has been staying in Indiana while their newborn recovers after being born at 24 weeks. This family was able to get the baby necessities needed for their new little one and stated, "This could not have come at a better time. We will forever be grateful." Shoes, books, toys, DVDs and bikes were just a few of the popular selections made by families who participated. One mother expressed her appreciation as she was finally able to purchase a Christmas tree for her family.
This event wrapped up the final "Community Tuesday" for the 2013 Indianapolis Colts regular season. Through this event, the lives of more than 140 individuals were touched with the opportunity to have a gift filled holiday season and a great start to a New Year.
To view photos from the event, click here.**
About Colts Community Tuesdays**
The Colts are proud to team up with WTHR Channel 13 for our 2013 "Community Tuesday" events. During the regular NFL season, Tuesday is the only day off players receive. As a result, the Colts utilize every Tuesday to engage their players in various charitable events and programs throughout Central Indiana. From schools and hospital visits to blood drives and holiday outreach, Colts players participate in a wide variety of "Community Tuesday" activities throughout the season. For more information on all of the Colts outreach efforts, visit www.colts.com/community.*