NEWBURYPORT — Port City Sandwich Co. hosted its 10th annual Color Day breakfast for the Newburyport High School football team Wednesday, ahead of the big Thanksgiving Day game.
Owner Tyke Karopoulos said the sandwich shop started the tradition in 2012 after the former Fish Tale Diner, which previously hosted the team’s boosters for an annual breakfast, had closed.
Soon after the diner closed, someone approached Karopoulos to see if he was interested in hosting the breakfast. He agreed and offered to provide it for free because of his own love of football and due to an interest in giving back to the community.
The breakfast takes place each year on the Wednesday morning prior to Thanksgiving, which is known as Color Day at the high school. The students get to the sandwich shop about 6 to 6:30 a.m., fill up on the breakfast buffet, and then head over to the school for a pep rally.
The event was even more special this year because Karopoulos’ son, Tyler, a sophomore, is now on the team. Since he was young, Tyler has helped prepare the food for the buffet. This year, he actually had the chance to enjoy it as a player.
This year’s breakfast was the largest one yet with 53 players on the team. The sandwich shop has 34 seats, so Karopoulos coordinates with the captains’ parents each year to get an accurate count and asks those parents to help bring extra chairs.
The annual Thanksgiving Day game against Amesbury High School kicks off Thursday at 10 a.m. at Landry Memorial Stadium in Amesbury.