There’s an old saying which goes, "the more things change, the more they stay the same."

While there are changes to the annual Fall Preview Watermelon Scrimmage today at Memorial Stadium, a constant for 12 years will still be there.

The United Way’s Tailgate Feed, an annual way to kick off its yearly fundraising campaign, will once again feed family, friends and fans of Red Demons athletes.

"I can’t think of a better way to thank the community than by doing this," said Gayle Ausmus, executive director, United Way of Dodge City. "We’ve been doing this for 12 years and it’s grown in that time.

"We served about 400 the first year, but last year we served about 700."

United Way volunteers, board members and others will serve up a hamburger or hot dog, chips and a drink for a free will donation beginning at 5:45 p.m. at the stadium.

"Cargill donates the burgers, Wendy’s donates hamburger buns and Dillons donates ice and water," Ausmus said. "We supply the hot dogs for the event.

"But we enjoy getting out in the community and thanking people for their donations and free will offering. It’s a great way to kick off another fundraising campaign."

The United Way of Dodge City contributes funds to multiple organizations in the community, from RSVP to Meals on Wheels to Bright Beginnings.

The annual event does have some changes this year. There is a 3:30 p.m. middle school scrimmage and a 5 p.m. soccer scrimmage with an introduction of soccer players to follow.

At 6 p.m. the National Anthem will be played with the football scrimmage to follow. An introduction of trainers, cross country runners and volleyball players occurs at 6:25 p.m. Golfers, tennis players and cheerleaders will be introduced beginning at 6:45 p.m.

The watermelon feed will begin at the conclusion of the football scrimmage.

The tailgate will feed people until 7 p.m. or whenever the United Way runs out of hamburgers and hot dogs.

"I hate to say that," Ausmus said, "but, it’s happened before."


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