TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS TO CELEBRATE FANS THROUGHOUT REGULAR SEASON FINALE SUNDAY
On Sunday, December 31, when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the New Orleans Saints for the regular season finale, the Buccaneers will celebrate their fans throughout gameday. The team’s youngest fans can kick off their gameday activities by joining the Bucs Squad and enjoying the “Bucs Squad Experience” outside Raymond James Stadium. In addition, the team will continue the tradition of honoring local heroes with the Hero of the Game and the Salute to Service Suite, supported by Jabil, while also welcoming special season pass members as the Honorary Flag Runner and Guest of the Game for the coin toss.
HONORARY FLAG RUNNER: SEASON PASS MEMBER MIKE PEREZ
For team introductions, Mike Perez, a Buccaneers charter Season Pass Member since 1973, will lead players out of the tunnel as the team’s Honorary Flag Runner.
HONORARY GUEST OF THE GAME: SEASON PASS MEMBER PAULA TEXEL
Following player introductions, Season Pass Member Paula Texel will serve as the team’s Honorary Guest of the Game for the coin toss. Texel has been a Season Pass Member with the Buccaneers since 1997.
HALFTIME: YOUTH FOOTBALL SCRIMMAGE
At halftime of Sunday’s contest, the Buccaneers will also host more than 125 youth football players ages 7-8 to participate in a scrimmage. Fans at Raymond James Stadium will enjoy watching the Florida Elite AFC All Stars versus the Florida Elite NFC All Stars during the half.
HERO OF THE GAME: U.S. ARMY STAFF SERGEANT RICHARD L. WILBUR
Before kickoff, the Buccaneers will continue a tradition with the team’s military Hero of the Game. At every Buccaneers home game, a selected military member will be stationed on the Pirate Ship in Buccaneer Cove to ready the team for action. This week, the Buccaneers will honor Buccaneers Season Pass Member, United States Army Staff Sergeant Richard L. Wilbur. In 1968, Staff Sergeant Wilbur embarked on his first tour of Vietnam, with an assignment to the D company, 4th Medical Battalion and 4th Infantry Division. While serving with the D Company, he performed the duties of an Army Medic, a Laboratory Technician, X-Ray Technician, a Dental Assistant, and Narcotics Control Officer. During his service as a medic, Staff Sergeant Wilbur received the Army Commendation Medal with a V device and a Combat Medic Badge. His second tour during the Vietnam War was served at the 24th Evacuation Hospital in Vung Tau where he cared for wounded soldiers from the United States and Australia. For his duty and commitment to service, Staff Sergeant Wilbur received the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm and Vietnam Civil Actions Honor Medal.
SALUTE TO SERVICE SUITE, SUPPORTED BY JABIL
At every Buccaneers home game, the team honors a distinguished group of military members with an exclusive gameday experience in the Salute to Service Suite, supported by Jabil. During a break in play, fans are encouraged to direct their attention to the pirate ship and join players and coaches in thanking local servicemen and servicewomen for their sacrifices, including:
COMMUNITY PLAYER TICKET PROGRAM: O.J. HOWARD
- From the Army, Colonel Larry McNeal, Lieutenant Colonel William S. Schuyler Jr., Captain Michael Crenshaw, Captain Phoebe Crenshaw, and Captain Christina Perez
- From the Air Force, Lieutenant Colonel TJ Eller and Technical Sergeant Robert Thompson
At every home game, Buccaneers players host fans from a number of non-profit organizations throughout the Tampa Bay area. Sunday’s Community Player Ticket Spotlight will feature OJ’s Juice Pack hosted by tight end O.J. Howard. Howard has been busy in the Tampa Bay community since arriving as the Bucs’ first-round pick in the 2017 draft. As part of the Buccaneers Rookie Club, Howard has spent time with military personnel at MacDill Air Force Base, visited with patients and their families at Moffitt Cancer Center and most recently brought holiday cheer to youth at John Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg. This past summer, Howard also launched the inaugural “Got Da Juice” backpack drive and community day in his hometown of Prattville, Alabama that served over 300 children.
BUCS CARE 50/50 RAFFLE
On gameday, fans have the opportunity to participate in the Bucs Care Foundation 50/50 Raffle while supporting a worthwhile cause. Each raffle ticket purchased will go towards a huge cash prize, in which 50 percent of the net proceeds help support the team’s 24 Buccaneers Academies and Bucs Care Foundation initiatives throughout Tampa Bay. The other 50 percent will go to one lucky winner. Tickets are available in-game at kiosks located in section 106, 115, 131, 140 and each club level as well as mobile sellers throughout the stadium and on the Buccaneers app. For a complete list of rules and regulations, locate a kiosk or mobile seller on game day. To learn more, visit www.buccaneers.com/5050.
BUCS SQUAD EXPERIENCE & BUCS SQUAD TWO-MINUTE DRILL AT RAYMOND JAMES STADIUM
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Bucs Squad is an exciting program designed to get the next generation of Bucs fans behind the bench and inside the huddle with their favorite NFL team. By becoming a Bucs Squad member, fans 14-and-under gain access to amazing gameday experiences. For more information and to sign up for the Bucs Squad, visit the Bucs Squad Two-Minute Drill from 7:00 p.m. until the end of the game in section 137.
The Bucs Squad Experience will be open 1:00-3:30 p.m. in Lot 6D (Tampa Bay Blvd. between Gates C and D) for all children and families attending the game. The Bucs Squad Experience will include inflatable football activities, interactive PLAY 60 football clinics, as well as visits from Captain Fear (1:00-2:00pm) and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders (1:30-2:15 p.m.) for children to enjoy free of charge.
BUCCANEERS ACADEMY GAMEDAY FOR KIDS GUESTS
The Bucs Care Foundation hosts 100 “Gameday for Kids” from the Buccaneers Academy program to promote academic achievement and positive behavior in children. Selected groups receive game tickets, t-shirts, food vouchers and Buccaneers flags by achieving goals set by their teachers. More than 16,000 youths and community members representing over 100 organizations from Tampa Bay have been rewarded through the annual program. This game’s attendees will represent Winthrop Charter School.
Through the Buccaneers Academy program, the team provides resources, enhanced curriculum, and hands-on participation from Buccaneers players and cheerleaders to over 16,000 underserved students and 2,200 teachers at 24 elementary schools the team has adopted throughout Hillsborough County. Each of the schools in the Buccaneers Academy program, most of which are Title I schools, has also received a court-sized shade cover that provides an improved environment for students to safely participate in physical health and wellness activities.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers players, coaches, cheerleaders, alumni, and staff have an active role in community improvement through a variety of youth health and education initiatives, family outreach, and military support. Innovative partnerships between the Bucs Care Foundation and local nonprofit organizations provide assistance to thousands of Central Florida residents each year. Glazer Family Foundation initiatives including the Glazer Family Foundation Vision Mobile and the Glazer Children’s Museum continue to enhance learning opportunities for Bay Area youths. To learn more, visit www.buccaneers.com/community.