Golden Age Athletes poppin’ their way to Alaska

Veterans banking on popcorn being their ticket to Alaska

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Overton Brooks VA Medical Center’s veteran athletes already are talking about the 2019 National Veterans Golden Age Games.

Now its members are banking on your love of fresh, buttery popcorn to help them get there.

“The popcorn sells itself. People smell it cooking, and they want to just come and get it,” said Army veteran Shelton McCrainey.

His teammates call him “Popcorn.” And rightfully so.

On Thursday mornings, you can find him manning the cart on the first floor of Overton Brooks VA Medical Center in Shreveport.

“I don’t get sick of it,” McCrainey explained. “By doing the popcorn sales here, we’re helping to sponsor the veterans that are going from here to the next Golden Age Games.”

It’s an adventure he and eight other veterans were proud to embark on in New Mexico.

The athletes depend on donations from the popcorn sales and other sponsors to help offset some of the travel costs.

"The wonderful thing that we have so many supporters here in the hospital and people, veterans that are learning about the Golden Age Games come back and make donations."

Overton Brooks had nine athletes representing the ArkLaTex travel to this year’s games. They returned with 13 medals.

Their eyes already are focused on bringing back even more hardware next year.

“We’re asking people to come out and support us and help us get to the games in Anchorage, Alaska.”

Serving up some of the best popcorn in the area doesn’t hurt either.

“It’s very, very good popcorn,” McCrainey said.

“People from as far away as Texarkana, Texas, come here and get huge bags of popcorn. It’s really, really good.”

You can find McCrainey and his team members from 8:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. every Thursday on the medical center’s first floor.

Just let your nose be your guide.

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