The end of the summer means one certainty lies ahead for Santa Clara youth: school is about.
But before that first school bell rings, there's no better way to end the summer than with a bar-b-que, especially if that bar-b-que is co-hosted by your favorite football team.
For the children of the Rivermark Community, that is exactly what they got Tuesday afternoon when a group of 49ers players showed up at their end-of-summer bash.
The Rivermark Parents' Group, Don Callejon School Community Organization (DCSCO), the San Francisco 49ers and a group of 49ers wives all hosted the event that took place at Lick Mill Park in Santa Clara. The more than 100 community members who showed up were able to meet and talk with the players, the children participated in drills from the Junior Gatorade Training Camp and everybody enjoyed Andy's BBQ.
"This was a great opportunity for the residents of Santa Clara to interact with the 49ers," Community Relations Director Joanne Pasternack said. "Not only do the 49ers work in this community, but we live here too and we are always looking for ways to thank the community for its continued support."
One of those players who live in the community is fifth-year guard Tony Wragge. And when he showed up at the event with his family, Wragge couldn't help but notice all of the familiar faces.
"I live right down the street, so I see a lot of these people pretty much every day," he said. "There is a personal relationship we share with the people of this area.
"It is nice to come to this event not only because the 49ers are helping to sponsor it, but because it is fun to interact with people who support you and want to see you do good things."
While Wragge and teammates Vernon Davis , Marcus Hudson and Adam Snyder all enjoyed themselves Tuesday, it was nothing compared to the fun had by the kids in the community who got a chance to meet the players.
"This is really cool," a girl named Jessica said. "I got to meet so many players. I'm looking forward to the 49ers winning, hopefully, all of their games this year and doing a good job.
"We're having a fun time."
While the children enjoyed themselves throughout the afternoon, the real fun began when Hudson took over the activities. He led the children in stretching, organized several races and even participated in a water balloon fight.
"I'm trying to teach them little exercises they can do everyday so they're not just sitting inside," Hudson said. "I'm trying to get them to go outside and stretch their legs out."
As the kids played on the field, their parents could easily see how much fun their children were having with the NFL stars. And perhaps no parent got more out of the event than Roger Ramirez, president of DCSCO.
"This means a great deal because over the years, the 49ers have been a great supporter of the school," he said. "This means a lot to the kids because it shows they have the support of a world-class organization like the 49ers supporting their dreams and goals."
The end-of-summer bar-b-que was the first Tuesday Community Relations Event the team participated in this year. Throughout the season, players will be in the community every Tuesday helping the Bay Area however they can.