Jags donating $1 million to relief efforts and giving away 5,000 tickets

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry says Sunday's game is not simply about football, it's about bringing the city together.

Jaguars President Mark Lamping took the podium at a downtown press conference Tuesday afternoon to announce the donation of $1 million to a relief fund for the First Coast after Hurricane Irma thrashed the area this weekend.

Lamping is also making 5,000 tickets available to first responders and select fans that head to this link to register. Winners will be selected at random.

"To help deliver a homefield advantage on Sunday, and to provide some relief," Lamping said of the ticket giveaway.

Mayor Lenny Curry took the podium first to announce the game would be held at EverBank against the Tennessee Titans as scheduled this coming Sunday.

"The Jaguars are a part of the fabric of this community and have been for years," he said. "This is not simply about football - this is about bringing our city and our community together."

He touched briefly on the relief efforts, saying that the city will come back better than ever.

"We will recover, we will rebuild - that is happening now," he said. "We have people without power and we understand how painful that is - I'm still without power."

Irma devastated coastal communities and those along the river, coming from the west side of the state early Sunday morning. While the Beaches survived with minimal damage, St. Johns, Nassau, Camden and Glynn counties were hurt by the storm. 

Historic Jacksonville neighborhoods like Riverside, Avondale and San Marco saw widespread flooding. Downtown Jacksonville was under feet of water the day the storm struck.

Lamping said the Jaguars were thankful for all those working to bring back a semblance of normality to the lives of those affected.

"Some folks working on their fifth, sometimes sixth consecutive day and getting very little sleep," he said, "just thank you very much."

He thanked JFRD, the National Guard, JEA, Beaches Electric and other companies working to restore life to normal on the First Coast.

"Shad [Khan, Jaguars owner,] wishes he could be here," Lamping continued, "unfortunately he's out of the country... Jax so often gets labeled as a small market and he believes it has a bigger heart than any community he's been a part of."

The Jaguars will also be encouraging their business partners to donate to the First Coast Relief Fund.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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