CARDINALS CORNER

Turkey time! Trey McBride serves up Thanksgiving meals at Scottsdale Boys & Girls

Nov 23, 2023, 11:58 AM

Trey McBride lends a helping hand at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale...

Arizona Cardinals TE Trey McBride lends a helping hand at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

SCOTTSDALE — For the past 15 years, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale hosted Thanksgiving dinners for teens and club alumni in an effort to provide a warm, safe place around the holidays.

This time around, those making sure every belly was filled at the Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch got a helping hand from Arizona Cardinals tight end Trey McBride.

After Arizona’s Week 11 loss to the Houston Texans, the tight end dove headfirst into the multi-hour event on Monday night, becoming the first pro athlete to attend the gathering since its inception.

“I just think it’s important,” McBride said. “You can always find time to give back and this was a great opportunity to do so. I thought it was an awesome time. It’s never too busy to give back.

“My mom always wanted us to help out around this time and always volunteered herself,” the tight end added. “Growing up, I’ve always done this and wanted to continue to do this even though I wasn’t home.”

McBride did much more than hand out food, too, kicking off the event with some words of wisdom and what he’s thankful for. Of course, he ended up talking shop about football and life with teens and staff members.

It’s a moment many of the kids — and club staff — won’t soon forget. For some, this very well could have been one of their first tastes of a home-cooked Thanksgiving meal.

“They were a little starstruck at first … he’s a big dude, but Trey did awesome as far as being so receptive to the teens,” said senior director of teen services for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale Beethoven Felix. “I’ve seen volunteers come in here and they’re a little nervous. Not him. From the get-go, he went right to the floor with them. We kind of put him on the spot right away but I think the kids reciprocated well towards the end like, ‘That’s amazing we had this guy in our teen center.’

“I think having a professional athlete come to a location here, they understand the cause that we’re at every day,” Felix added. “We’re on the frontlines every day and they understand what we do for our youth. I think this sends out a bigger picture to a lot of people about having advocacy for our teen members.”

Why The Boys & Girls Club?

While McBride likely had quite a few options in the giving-back department, the tight end couldn’t pass up helping an organization that does so much for the community’s youth.

“I thought it was a great opportunity with the holidays coming around to give back to people who are doing a lot for this great organization and what they do for these kids and the community,” McBride said.

Felix’s desire to look ahead for even more ways to give back — with the Thanksgiving dinner still taking place — was even more proof of that.

“We call this, ‘The Boys & Girls Club Movement,'” Felix said. “We’re always on our feet and on our toes with the kids and it’s (an) everyday kind of thing. Once we’re done with this one, we look forward to hosting something next, whether it’s a prom dinner or something as simple as a graduation dinner.

“We just got to keep going. We got to top this one and top the next one and keep going.”

Looking to lend a hand yourself? Head over to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale’s website for more info on how to give back.

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Turkey time! Trey McBride serves up Thanksgiving meals at Scottsdale Boys & Girls