Football Season Means Fandom And Philanthropy For Dedicated Groups


Ravens Roosts And Ravens Nest 10 Welcome The New Year

Each time this season that quarterback Joe Flacco slings a touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree or Hayden Hurst, each time that linebacker C.J. Mosley stuffs a rusher on third down, members of several Ravens fan groups around Pasadena will have something extra to cheer about.

“We need the Ravens to do good because then we do good,” said Darryl Despeaux, president of Ravens Roost 65.

It’s a common sentiment shared by members of Ravens Roost 75, Ravens Roost 129 and Ravens Nest 10. For their philanthropy efforts to succeed, for them to donate funds to Anne Arundel County nonprofits, they need fans to be excited about the Ravens prospects. When that happens, they can raise more money with raffles, event tickets and autographed memorabilia.

Here’s what each group has planned for the season.


Founded in 2001, Roost 65 was Pasadena’s first roost according to Darryl Despeaux. Over the years, members have donated money to causes like Kami's Jammies and London’s Legacy.

Special Olympics Maryland also has a mission close to the hearts of Darryl and his wife, Tracey Despeaux.

“Tracey and I got involved in 1996 because a friend of ours had a daughter with Down syndrome, and we haven’t stopped since,” Darryl explained. “I became a Super Plunger, and this is probably my 15th year.”

While Darryl will have to wait until January to plunge into the Chesapeake Bay 24 times in 24 hours, he and other members can look forward to other fundraisers in 2018.

The roost will hold a murder mystery dinner on August 24 at 6:00pm at Beefalo Bob’s. Tickets are $40 for the show; food and drinks are separate. For more information about the murder mystery, contact Wendy Olenik at 410-549-2722.

Roost 65 will also gift an annual scholarship in the name of Douglas Jarrell, a Despeaux family friend who died in a motorcycle accident on Solley Road in 2004.

So, how much money can Roost 65 raise for charity this year? If that depends on the Ravens success, Despeaux thinks they will do well, barring injuries.

“Everyone is talking about Lamar Jackson. He’s not going to be ready yet,” Darryl said. “If you remember, Joe Flacco was thrown into the fire [as a rookie] and I don’t want to see Flacco get injured. My prediction is that they will win 11 games and get into the playoffs.”

Roost 65 is just shy of 100 members and meets the third Monday of every month at 7:30pm at Beefalo Bob’s.

“All the members in Roost 65 I consider my family,” Darryl said. “A lot of people think we just go to football games and tailgate and drink too much, but it’s not all about that. It’s about the roost and giving back to your community.”


Fresh off their victory of the Edgar Allan Poe Award — given to the roost with the most pride — at the annual Ravens Roost convention in Ocean City in July, Ravens Roost 75 is planning several events. Members look forward to a trivia night on October 2 at 7:45pm at the Brass Rail Pub and a bull roast with an auction and prizes on November 17 from 7:00pm to midnight at the Columbian Center in Severna Park. Tickets for the roast are $40 in advance or $45 at the door. Contact Warren Mortimer at 410-255-9158.

Roost 75 will give its proceeds to Ruth Parker Eason School in Millersville, the United Service Organizations, North County Emergency Outreach Network, Sarah’s House and others.

Ravens Roost 75 meets at the Brass Rail Pub on the first Tuesday of every month at 7:30pm. For more information, contact the group’s president, Keith Wiedenhoeft, at

New members are always welcome to join the roost for charity and for rooting on the birds.

“We just love doing things for others,” Wiedenhoeft said. “It is all about making things in the world just a little bit better!”


For Ravens Roost 129 President Judy Dickert, the opportunity to lead the group was all about giving back.

“I always wanted to give back to the community during my adult life, but I didn’t know how to approach it,” Dickert said. “I did soup kitchens and things like that, but I always wanted to do more and didn’t know how to go about it. And then, when I heard about this, it interested me. As a result of that, giving back to these different charities, I have met a lot of great people, this whole new group of friends that has very special people.”

Those “special people” organized a charity Zumbathon and cornhole tournament in August and have planned a September 16 fundraiser at the Annapolis Mall to benefit the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition.

On September 29, from 11:00am to 5:00pm, the roost will participate in the 2018 Dip Bowl, which is sponsored by 98 Rock. “You bring two dips and people sample the dips, but the main reason why we do it is because the money goes to [fighting] ALS,” Dickert said.

In October, Roost 129 will support a YWCA fundraiser. A firm date has not been set, but people can stay updated by checking Facebook.

Roost 129 is also assembling care packages for military members aboard the USS Essex.

“We’re going to have a goal of 1,000 letters to write to the soldiers because [military officials] say it’s amazing how many people don’t get anything from family members or friends,” Dickert said.

Roost 129 will raffle off two tickets for every Ravens game, with the proceeds going to scholarships for Northeast and Chesapeake High students.

Roost 129 meets at Twain’s Tavern on the last Monday of every month at 7:00pm. To join, email


Ravens Nest 10 donates about $20,000 to charity each year, and the club’s 52 members expect to do the same this year. Its 2018 beneficiaries are Special Olympics Maryland – Anne Arundel County, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Maryland Patriot Guard, Operation Welcome Home and SPCA of Anne Arundel County.

Nest 10 President Cindy Ricci has retired her super-fan persona, the Purple Dame, but she’s not done giving to charity. She did make one special visit before hanging up her purple wig. She went to Canton, Ohio, for the National Football League’s Hall of Fame game and to see linebacker Ray Lewis get inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame — an experience she likened to a Kodak moment.

“Ray got up and 20 minutes into it, we were looking for the collection plate, because he was preaching,” Ricci said.

Back at home, Ricci and her fellow fans in Nest 10 are gearing up for a family fun night on September 15. For $5, attendees can play at the Severna Park Golf Center from 5:00pm to 7:00pm and then head to Bill Bateman’s between 7:00pm and 9:00pm, because the restaurant will donate 15 percent of the food proceeds to Ravens Nest 10.

Instead of the annual bull and oyster roast, Nest 10 is doing a crab feast on October 7 at Kurt’s Beach from noon to 4:30pm. Tickets are $60.

“We wanted the event to be something that was a little more of a family-fun, all-ages event and allows us the opportunity to watch Ravens football during the event,” Ricci said.

The Nest will also collect toys for North County Emergency Outreach Network over the course of three months.

Like other Ravens fans and philanthropists said, participation is about more than cheering on Sundays.

“The little things that we give are a big deal to the people who really need them,” Ricci said.

To join Ravens Nest 10, which meets on the third Wednesday of the month at Bill Bateman’s at 7:30pm, fill out the application at


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