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Amarillo Bulls lend helping hand to nonprofit

February 10, 2016 | By AARON DAVIS | Amarillo Globe-News article online | article.pdf

Amarillo Bulls lend helping hand to nonprofit

Aaron Davis / Amarillo Globe-News – (from left to right) Amarillo Bulls hockey players Joey Molinaro, Michael Forman, Nicholas Santoro and Anton Martinsson volunteered to do yard work on Wednesday for Community Options.

The Amarillo Bulls took advantage of a warm, spring-like day to do some yard work for their biggest fans, the folks with Community Options.

The entire Amarillo Bulls hockey team raked leaves, cleaned patios, pulled ivy and trimmed trees at six houses that Community Options rents out to people with special needs.

“The Bulls have been supporting us for a few years, and the head coach said that his guys need more time to help out in the community,” said Courtney Corbello, assistant executive director for Community Options. “We want our houses to be a part of the community and stand out, and part of that is beautiful yards, so we gave them our houses in most need and they said they’re good with getting out and getting dirty and could do that.”

Community Options is a local nonprofit that buys, builds, renovates and furnishes the homes. In turn, they also help their members find jobs so they can pay rent and live independent lives.

In the past, the Bulls have helped Community Options raffle off tickets during games to support the nonprofit’s programs.

“They’ve also just come out and hung out with some of our guys and got them jerseys,” said Fernando Rodriguez, program manager for Community Options. “A lot of our guys are huge Bulls fans, and to us, that means a lot for them to just come and hang out.”

For their part, the players found it refreshing, but odd, to do yard work in February, as many of them are from colder areas.

“It feels good to give back to the community because they do a lot for us, and this is a way to say thank you,” Bulls forward Michael Forman said.

“They support us a lot and they’re right by us every game, win or lose,” said Bulls forward Nicholas Santoro. “It’s the same people coming, and the energy is always there.”