Providence Park - 7:00 AM
With the crews loaded up into their respective vans, the third-annual Rose City Road Trip, presented by Providence Health & Services, is set to hit the highway for a day of community outreach in the northwest-coastal region of Oregon.
- PHOTOS: 2017 Rose City Road Trip
After a two-hour drive, the caravan will arrive at Providence Seaside Hospital where Portland Timbers players Darlington Nagbe, Lawrence Olum and Roy Miller will meet and spend time getting to know the patients. At the same time, Timber Joey will be making a private visit to Providence Rehabilitation and Home Services in Gearhart, Oregon.
Next, the Road Trip will make a stop at Warrenton Grade School for a community service project building buddy benches, painting planter pots and signs, before heading on to Warrenton Field for a youth clinic. Up to 200 kids will come out to meet and play with some of their favorite Portland Timbers before attending a Q&A and autograph session with the players.
The Road Trip will then make a final stop at Fort George Brewery in Astoria for a pub party from 4:30 to 6:30pm.
Be sure to follow along on social media for all the latest updates on the day's Rose City Road Trip events, along with photos from each of the stops!
Providence Seaside Hospital - 9:00 AM
The first stop of the day was Providence Seaside Hospital where the players walked through the hospital, greeting patients and staff. A number of doctors came out to say hello, snag a picture and chat up their favorite players.
At one point, three doctors came out to meet the players, a pair of them mildly starstruck. As their group shied forward for a picture, one took charge, grabbing her coworkers by the hands. “We’re a team just like you guys,” she affirmed, while directing her coworkers towards a laughing Olum, Nagbe and Miller.
As the team made their way around the hospital, they met another doctor later on who excitedly put her arms around the players. “My son is going to think I’m such a cool mom,” she said as they posed for a picture.
Before leaving, a group of staff members in the emergency department greeted the group with a Timbers’ themed rendition of the song “You Are My Sunshine.” Olum noted that the chants that Dr. Lindgren and his emergency staff performed was “pretty nice to see.”
Warrenton Grade School - 10:30 AM
The Timbers’ next stop was at Warrenton Grade School where Timber Joey and the players lent a hand with painting log slabs, planter boxes and putting together “Buddy Benches.”
“If you need a buddy, you want a buddy, you be a buddy. It’s really that simple,” said Debbie Morraw, the school board chair of Warrenton Grade School. The idea of Buddy Bench, she explained, was thought up by a second-grader in Australia who was lonely, and decided if he had a place to be seen by others, kids would invite him to join in to play. Morraw excitedly added that each each surrounding school district will be receiving one of the Buddy Benches crafted today. Timber Joey, who put together many of the benches, joked "I'm pretty good at [putting the benches together]. Some people aren't," he went on to note. "In the ed it's going to be a happy place for kids, so I'm very excited about it."
Lawrence Olum made a new friend while painting a Timbers logo on a log slab. "Austin's a good guy," Olum said of his painting partner, Austin Palmer. "He showed me how to put the green and the white on the Timbers logo. Hopefully someone will notice it and pay a lot of money for it," Olum chimed.
After taking a picture with his painted log slab, Austin said he had fun painting with the Timbers defender, but admitted “it’s hard to stay in the lines with fresh paint on wood.”
Austin also mentioned that he was most looking forward to attending the soccer clinic later on in the day, and play with his teammates and the professional players.
Warrenton Field - 1:30 PM
For Miller, Olum and Nagbe, the caravan ended at Warrenton Field, where the Timbers met up with a group of over 100 youth players for a soccer clinic.
The kids went through a series of drills to work on their technical skills as they played alongside some of their Portland heroes. The players coached the kids, demonstrating drills and encouraging them the entire time.
“Playing with the kids and having fun with them, is one of the things I always like doing,” said Miller. Nagbe agreed, noting that “Playing with the kids and seeing all the smiles on their faces” was the most rewarding aspect of the day.
Nagbe, who became friends with a number of aspiring players, detailed his enjoyment of getting to know the young players and answering any questions they had throughout the camp.
“With kids there’s always great questions to ask and funny ones as well,” said Darlington. “It just makes you remember why you started playing the game. Just to have fun. It’s all about the ball.”
The players participated in a question and answer session, alongside Timber Joey, before autographing pieces of memorabilia for the each of the youth participants. The players answered questions ranging from “Do you ever plan to score from half-field?” and “How many championships have you won?” to “What do I need to do to be a real soccer player?”
In the end, the Nagbe, Olum and Miller each, respectively, shared one piece of advice they hoped the kids would take home.
“Enjoy it and have fun.”