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Ventura County Star: Meatheads Sing Songs of Season

December 10, 2008

Ventura County Star – Meatheads sing songs of season

By Alicia Doyle
Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Not a lot of so-called jocks in their late teens and early 20s take the time to brighten the day of seniors. But that’s the case with Meathead Movers, a group of athletes who don Santa hats at the end of their shifts and sing Christmas carols to folks in assisted-living facilities.”Our guys not only participate but genuinely love doing it,” said Aaron Steed, 28, president and CEO of Meathead Movers, a Camarillo-based moving company made up of athletes working their way through college; the company serves Santa Barbara, Ventura and northern Los Angeles counties.  This holiday season, as the moving teams finish their shifts, they’re given the location of the closest assisted-living facility, where they spend at least an hour singing to and chatting with residents. “All of our athlete movers participate when not on a move or in class,” Steed said. “We usually send a crew of six to 12 to each assisted-living residence.”

All join in

Additionally, the company’s operations managers, move coordinators and Steed and his wife join in the caroling.  “Everyone at Meathead really enjoys the caroling, and once you do it one time, and see how much cheer it spreads, you want to go as often as possible,” Steed said.  Sadly, there are a lot of residents who don’t get as many visitors as they would like, and the holidays especially can be difficult, he said.  “Our ultimate goal is to put as many smiles on as many faces as possible — even if they are just laughing at the sight of a 6-foot-4 wrestler in a Santa hat trying to stay in tune.”  Meathead Movers are a huge draw at Atria Los Posas Senior Living in Camarillo, where residents as old as 102 look forward to the seasonal visits, said Sarah Buis, community sales director.  “The residents love it; it makes them feel special and loved and that they haven’t been forgotten around the holidays,” Buis said. “A lot of times, the elderly get depressed around Christmastime, and it lifts their spirits when people come in and spread their joy.”  The idea was inspired by a Meathead Mover who had been on many moves at assisted-living facilities.  “He realized how much the residents enjoyed chatting with the Meatheads and suggested it,” Steed said.  With that, Meathead Movers began caroling last year and had so much fun they decided to do it again this year. Plus, “bringing Christmas cheer to those who might be having a hard time during the holidays is another way for us to reach out to our community and help people,” Steed said.

Residents love our movers’

“We do a lot of moves within assisted-living residences,” Steed said. “The residents love our movers because they are reminded of their grandchildren, because our movers are clean-cut and polite, and because there is no language barrier.  “The managers of the residences love us because we are careful, insured and well-trained and make a point of carefully documenting how each assisted-living residence prefers to have things done. We are proud that we offer a service that makes a difficult transition easier than it would be otherwise.”  Jeremy Scriven, operations manager of the Ventura County branch of Meathead Movers, enjoys serving his community by giving others pleasant memories during the holidays.  “I hope that a small group of 20-something-year-old athletic guys, singing traditional carols, will be fun and enjoyable for everyone involved,” said Scriven, 28, of Camarillo. “I truly feel blessed to have this opportunity to entertain the great people of Ventura County during such a magical time of the year.”

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