MARQUETTE — Athletes of the upcoming U.P. Football All-Star Game checked in at Northern Michigan University to begin preparing for their game on Saturday, but they didn’t come empty handed.

Upon arriving, each player brought food that they’ve collected from their communities to be donated to The Beacon House food pantry. Among the donated foods were canned goods, noodles, and other non–perishable food items. This opportunity teaches the athletes a valuable lesson outside of school and the football field.

“This is one of the greatest things about the All–Star game I think,” said XCel Sports Training President Todd Goldbeck, “as we really promote with the players especially that they give back to their communities. They’re great athletes and great players and they were once kids and so we promote that they go back to their communities and give to the youth programs and donate their time to the various organizations and food drives such as this is really the kickoff the week to show them that it’s not only about football, but it’s about giving back to your communities and we really preach that.”

Just under one thousand pounds of food was brought in to help an organization that helps so many.