A big team effort to protect House Park from flooding

Football players, cheerleaders and coaches work together to protect House Park from flooding (Erin Cargile/KXAN)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The captain of the Anderson High School football teamed jumped into action Friday afternoon to make sure House Park doesn’t become inundated with flood waters.

Senior Robert Abernathy started making phone calls and wrangled up local players, cheerleaders, parents and coaches to fill sandbags.

“It started with just four people — I’d say this is good progress,” said Abernathy while shoveling sand. That four grew to two dozen.

They were all working together to form a barrier along the southeast side of the stadium to stop Shoal Creek from flooding the field like it did over the Memorial Day weekend in 2015.

Teenagers from competing schools — Bowie High School, Austin High School and Anderson High School — along with younger families from Hill Country Pop Warner all share the same home turf. Friday, they were all working toward the same goal.

“My grandfather played on this field, I mean, it just means so much to all of us here in Austin,” said Abernathy. “It’s really an icon. It’s a symbol. We’ve grown up playing here and so we’re going to do everything that we can to protect it.”

After about an hour and a half, a wall of sandbags extended around the corner of the northeast side of the stadium.

The teenagers know protecting schools from flooding is the top priority. They say that’s why they came out to volunteer, so AISD employees could focus on buildings.

District employees are expected to be at House Park Saturday at 6 a.m. Saturday with more sand to make the wall even bigger.

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