*Panthers will donate $50,000 of game-worn & practice-worn uniforms in the Carolina Panthers High School Uniform Grant program as part of the team’s on-going effort to support football played at the grassroots level. The team will award thirteen (13) uniform grants to assist high school athletic programs in North and South Carolina. The equipment is comprised of the actual game-worn and practice-worn uniforms. The uniforms have been expertly maintained and are in excellent condition. The uniform equipment is valued at over $50,000. All high schools in North and South Carolina are eligible to apply. Applications for the program can be downloaded at www.panthers.com/community. Deadline Feb. 14.
*Charlotte leaders are rallying Panther fans to support the team this weekend. Mayor Pat Cannon declared Friday as “Fan Friday.”
A three-day pep rally begins at the EpiCentre at 8 p.m. event Friday. For $15, participants get a Panthers T-shirt and will be part of a rally that includes the Panthers’ TopCats and the PurrCussion drum line.
At noon Saturday there will be a carnival at EpiCentre, featuring street performers, face painters, live music and children’s crafts. Free. There will be another rally on Sunday during the game.
Fans who don’t have tickets to the game are invited back to EpiCentre for another rally during the game Sunday.
Charlotte Area Transit System will put “Go Panthers” messages on buses and light-rail cars. There will be billboards throughout the city.
The three-day pep rally at EpiCentre begins with an 8 p.m. event Friday. For $15, participants get a Panthers T-shirt and will be part of a rally that includes the Panthers’ TopCats and the PurrCussion drum line.
Read more in the Charlotte Observer.
* The Carolina Panthers announced the first phase of $65 million of stadium reservations. Upgrades include four new escalator bays and larger video boards sporting in depth statistics and more. The renovations will start in two weeks. Watch the video here.
* Steve Smith told a Charlotte Observer reporter that he will play Sunday against the 49ers. Smith will unlikely be playing at 100 percent, but he’ll be giving everything he’s got.
It’s not about can I go? It’s about how confident do I feel when I am going? I will play Sunday,” Smith told the Observer Monday. “But it’s how much of that I don’t worry about the knee. That’s when the confidence increases.
* Want to see Panther players? The Observer is hosting a pre-playoff party on today featuring former Panthers: Mike Rucker, Eugene Robinson and Mark Carrier. Starts at 11:30 a.m. outside of the Observer, 600 S. Tryon St. Free pizza and drinks. The panel starts at noon.
*Carolina Panthers are wearing all black in Sunday’s game and are encouraging fans to do so too.
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