2019 Decorah High School graduate Carston Baumler is spending this week at UNI doing one of his favorite things -- playing football. Baumler was selected from a large pool of talented pre-college football players from across Iowa to play in the 47th Annual Iowa Shrine Bowl Game at the UNI Dome in Cedar Falls on Saturday.
"I feel very honored to have been chosen to participate in this event. My love of football, hard work and dedication has really paid off. I hope to represent Decorah well." Baumler will be busy with activities in Cedar Falls all week, including practices, a parade, an Honor Banquet, and a visit from children, parents and staff from the Minneapolis Shrine Hospital.
The Shriner's hospitals provide medical care for children suffering from orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate. The Shrine Bowl is held annually to raise money for The Shriner's Hospitals for Children. The event has raised more than $2.6 million since it began. Each participant is asked to raise $1,000 in donations and sponsorships, but Baumler has gone above and beyond that goal. "Due to the generous donations and sponsorships from family, friends and my football family, I was able to raise a little over $3000."
Baumler says he is looking forward to meeting and interacting with the kids from the Minneapolis Shriner's Hospital as well as meeting other players and making new friends. When asked if his future plans include playing football, Baumler says, "As much as I love playing football, this will be my last time putting on the pads and helmet." Baumler is currently working at Xpedition Archery and plans to pursue a welding certificate at NICC this fall.
"I would like to thank my family, friends and fans of Decorah Football for your continued support as I participate in this once in a lifetime game and opportunity," says Baumler.