Press Release for Monday, May 9, 2005

Wilkins Family and Cerebral Palsy Give to UNF

Contact Sharon Ashton
Department of Media Relations and Events
(904) 620-2115

Three rooms at the soccer stadium at the University of North Florida will be dedicated at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 10, 2005. The rooms will be dedicated in honor of Rick Wilkins, the Wilkins Family and the Cerebral Palsy of Northeast Florida for their support in building these teaching and rehabilitation rooms and faculty offices. The UNF College of Education and Human Services uses the rooms for teaching special education students and the UNF College of Health uses the physical therapy labs.

The Wilkins family has a history of giving to the university. Rick Wilkins is a retired professional baseball player, having played for the Chicago Cubs, the Houston Astros, the San Francisco Giants, the Seattle Mariners, the New York Mets, the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Diego Padres from 1991 – 2001. The Wilkins Foundation was established because Rick's sister Trisha has cerebral palsy. The foundation has a mission of providing financial and other support to institutions or charities that offer rehabilitative, education, recreational and vocational opportunities for physically or mentally challenged individuals.

Following the dedication of the rooms, the 2005 Grand Slam Grill-Out will be held a UNF’s Harmon Stadium. The UNF Ospreys will take on the Florida Southern Moccasins beginning at 7:00 p.m. More than 500 people, many with disabilities, and others from agencies providing assistance to the disabled, are expected to attend. Dozens of volunteers give their time to this event which encourages adults with disabilities to take part in events such as a baseball throw, batting practice, Karaoke, dancing and makeovers.

-- UNF --