It’s not because of any county rivalry or because the meet promises to be competitive.
Rather, Tuesday’s 6 p.m. meet at Woodland High’s main gym will benefit the homeless as 100 percent of the money raised at the gate will go to homeless children and their families in Bartow County for the holidays.
Kelly Whitmire, who is the homeless liaison in Bartow County schools, will distribute the funds raised for those in need in hopes of making the Christmas season a merry one for underprivileged Bartow children.
“Our program is heavily, heavily funded from the community. We lean on the community and local businesses to help us out and to help us raise money for our kids,” Woodland High wrestling coach Adrian Tramutola said of his program. “I feel like the community helps us out a bunch and we need to give back.”
This is the first year the Woodland wrestling program has had an event to raise money for this charity and Tramutola hopes it will brighten the holidays.
“It was something that I was thinking about doing, but I didn’t know which direction we were going to go into,” Tramutola said. “And one day, Kelly was on our campus, just talking about her program, and I just started talking to her and asked how we could help. I just really wanted to get our kids involved because we have some kids on our team that are very fortunate. And we kept talking and I thought, ‘What about having a dual meet where we wrestle our crosstown rival?’ She was ecstatic about it and we are hoping it turns out to be a good night.”
The Woodland wrestlers are also ecstatic about being able to contribute to the cause and give back to the community.
“They’re pretty excited about it,” Tramutola said of his wrestlers. “They’ve done a real good job of contacting a lot of their friends on social media and stuff like that. They have been making announcements in classrooms just trying to get as many people on board and doing their part.”
The meet will cost $5 to attend for adults and $3 for students and children.
“We’re not even going to take money out of the gate to pay the officials,” Tramutola said. “We’re going to give 100 percent of the money raised to [Whitmire].”
Those who attend are likely to see some excellent wrestling action as both Cartersville and Woodland have had success this season.
The Wildcats most recently finished second at the Parlay Invitational at Allatoona High amongst a stacked field that included Cass, Chattahoochee and Walton.
“We’re doing well. As coaches, we’re never going to be satisfied until its over and we’re, hopefully, going to be holding up that trophy down in Macon and in Gwinnett,” Tramutola said of the state meets. “We’re getting back to full strength. We’re slowly getting back. Guys are slowly gaining confidence after returning from injuries.
“We were 13 points out of being in first place at Allatoona. We definitely have some work to do, but we’re getting guys back and we’re making some good strides. So I’m happy where we’re at right now.”