In May 2012, the Kids2Carolina program was launched on the UNC fan website, www.InsideCarolina.com with the thought of a few people maybe donating $10 here or a few tickets there, but to Cody Thompson’s surprise the response was overwhelming.  IC posters were ecstatic at the thought of someone independent of the university trying to fill the stadium, but more importantly at the idea of a great cause and where this idea could go.  The initial response was donations totaling in the range of $8,500 and also more than 825 tickets to UNC athletic events!  Wow, again much more than he had ever imagined.  

Now that the ball started rolling, Kids2Carolina quickly became an incorporated not-for-profit organization based in Chapel Hill and run largely through the time and efforts of volunteers like Thompson. Volunteers have helped to develop and launch a website (www.kids2carolina.org) and to connect the group with organizations that are willing to help and promote Kids2Carolina.  At this time we have had three events already (Elon, Idaho and Maryland Football games) that have been held at Mt Carmel Baptist Church where we provide breakfast for the children and their chaperones, videos of Carolina Football highlights throughout the season, and a guest speaker to talk to the kids about the value of an education and being a person of integrity and high character. “The experience of organizing Kids2Carolina truly has been a coming together of some great people with the goal of promoting the program and helping kids,” Thompson said. “It’s been great fun and an honor working with these people.”

Other donors and volunteers with the program agree with Thompson and have been eager to give their time, money and tickets to the program that have been able to send over 1,400 children to UNC Football games this Fall to cheer on the Tar Heels.  Those folks consist of, but are not limited to, Barrett Freeman (VP/ Director of Operations) who has been Cody’s right hand man in the operations of this charity and game day operations, the great people of Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, the Thompson Family, myself (Director of Development), and providing the food for our events is John “Bear” Childress of The BBQ Joint. Thank you for everything! (For those that I’m missing my apologies and you know that your efforts are always appreciated!!)

Our mission is going to continue to grow and with the determination and passion we have for this cause we are looking forward to a bright future for Kids2Carolina and expanding our program down the road.  There are still too many kids out there with no direction, no guidance and no goals set for themselves and we think that at Kids2Carolina we can help be a part of that solution!!

Wrapping up this month’s Non-Profit of the month Spotlight I wanted to provide to you more information about how you can contribute to this cause either by volunteering at an upcoming event, liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter, or donating your tickets or through a monetary donation.  Please help those less fortunate than you this Holiday season experience a Tar Heel basketball game or other UNC athletic events TBD.  Thank you and Happy Holidays!! 



 “I loved going to UNC games when I was a kid and did everything that I could to make sure I could make the next one on the calendar. Kids2Carolina has the same mentality, giving kids the opportunity to see a live collegiate sporting event when they normally would not have that chance. Allowing these kids to see and experience the atmosphere of a college campus first hand hopefully will encourage them to stay on top of their schoolwork and strive to continue their education to higher levels,” said Joey Hoying, UNC class of 2003 – Social Media Manager Kids2Carolina

“Kids 2 Carolina is a subliminal educational experience about a young person walking across UNC’s campus for the very first time and an educational light bulb goes off and they say to themselves: ‘Hey I kind of like this college scene.’” said Bill Ipock who graduated from Carolina in 1971 and is now a football season ticket holder and donor to the program.

“I am so excited about Kids2Carolina and the opportunity it offers kids. The program brings back some great memories,” said Eddie West an alumnus of UNC. “Years ago when I was a UNC student, I had a couple of unused tickets. As I was about to enter Kenan Stadium, there were two young boys standing just outside the fence looking in. I gave them my extras and the looks on their faces made it worth it all. This program is doing that kind of thing in such a big way.”


If you are passionate about a non-profit in our local community or work for a charity that you would like to bring attention to in our column, please contact me at bchacos@chapelboro.com or (919) 240-6037. I would love to hear from you and learn more about your charity/non-profit.




A New Blue Dawn

Senior Day against Maryland was a pretty typical game for the 2012 Tar Heels. The Terrapins, perhaps motivated by the decision to leave the ACC in favor of the Big Ten, served as a mediocre but spirited opponent. Carolina fans had obvious reasons to be frustrated, as the Tar Heels repeatedly allowed big plays on the defensive side of the ball. The special teams performed particularly poorly, fumbling a kickoff return just before halftime to allow Maryland to take a 28-21 lead, and then gave up a touchdown on the kickoff to start the second half because they only had ten men on the field. The Tar Heels fought back in gritty fashion, though, with Bryn Renner throwing for two big touchdowns in the second half, leading to a 45-38 win. Overall, the defense was pretty bad (excepting one big interception on Maryland’s first drive), the offense was pretty good, Gio Bernard was brilliant (27 carries for 163 yards and a touchdown), there were some troubling mental mistakes…but the Tar Heels managed to emerge victorious. Sounds pretty familiar.

The inconsistency of the Tar Heels in any given game modeled their season as a whole. There were some clear highs this year: Gio Bernard’s late punt return touchdown to beat NC State for the first time in six tries, setting the record for points scored in a single game by a UNC squad in the 66-0 win over Idaho, four Tar Heels making 1st Team All-ACC (Bernard, Jonathan Cooper, Sylvester Williams, and Kevin Reddick), and winning the ACC’s Coastal Division on a tie-break over Miami (had either team actually been eligible to win anything). There were also some obvious lows: Losing to Duke for only the second time in 23 years, giving up a record 68 points at home against Georgia Tech on Homecoming, and getting blown out in the first half against Louisville come to mind most easily. It has been a season of unpredictability, to say the least, its meaning hard to define because of the postseason ban and the implementation of a totally new coaching scheme.

I’m really at a loss for words to describe how I feel about this team and this season. It happened. I was there, and I experienced the good, the bad, the ugly, all of it. Sure, we didn’t go to a bowl game or the conference title game. We didn’t go undefeated. But it was still special. Every season has its moments and memories that you will always carry with you, and this one was no different. Ultimately, I’m glad we’ve completely closed the door on the Butch Davis Era and can finally move forward as a team and university. There will be no bans, no asterisks, no drama as we look to next August. A new Blue Dawn, at last.


On Vandals & Customer Service

it’s been almost a month since I posted Welcome to Notre Dame so it seems now would be a good time for a reminder.  Except instead of welcoming Phoenix Fans from Elon, now it would be more appropriate to welcome the Vandals from Idaho.

So here ya go, a sign for your window:  

Welcome Vandals

And in case it scares you a bit to post such a sign in your window, here’s another option. 

Welcome Idaho Fans

I suggest posting a Go Heels sign as well.  You can get one of those plus signs for all upcoming guests for the season at:  www.SignsForGameDay.Biz.

Posting such signs is a sign of  class and good customer service.

And speaking of customer service, as you may already know, next week is Customer Service Week.

In case you’d like some ideas for how to celebrate, check out 10 Ways to Treat & Tweak During Customer Service Week.

If you have any ideas to add, please send them to:  Jan@Chapelboro.com