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Pats PLAY 60 in Dorchester

Posted Jun 5, 2013

Robert Kraft and members of the Patriots presented the Roger Clap Innovation School in Dorchester $50,000 as part of the NFL's PLAY 60 initiative.

Students at the Roger Clap Innovation School in Dorchester enjoyed quite a morning on Wednesday as members of the Patriots, owner Robert Kraft and the NFL were on hand to present a $50,000 check after the school was chosen as the winner of the league's PLAY 60 Bus Contest.

"You're privileged to be at this great school, the Roger Clap School," said Kraft as he addressed the students at an assembly. "I like hanging with winners and champions. You all worked together and you guys are champions.

"These great players came here on their day off because they wanted to be here but they have it easy. They only compete with 31 teams. You guys competed with 3,700 other schools and the Play 60 Bus is right here. You should all be very proud."

Parent council co-chair Claire Harris submitted a short essay on how the NFL PLAY 60 Bus could help the youth in their town get more active and healthy and indeed the Roger Clap School was chosen among more than 3,700 entries. As a result, it received a visit from the NFL PLAY 60 Bus full of sports equipment and gear, as well as NFL players, mascots and cheerleaders.

Seven players were on hand including Stevan Ridley, Shane Vereen, Matthew Slater, Niko Koutouvides, Chandler Jones, Danny Amendola and Leon Washington and they led kids through an NFL PLAY 60 PE class and helped them refurbish the outside of the school by participating in landscaping and painting projects. In addition, the school will receive a new playground, playground and PE equipment, as well as a football for each student. The donated items totaled more than $50,000.

"We want to encourage you all to get outside and play, number one, to eat healthy, number two and also to take care of your schoolwork inside the classroom," said Slater at the assembly. "We only get one body and we have to take care of the bodies we have. I know you guys like to play the video games and all that, but that's not what we're looking for. We want you guys to get outside, be active, get a little dirty and do that every day for at least 60 minutes. In the winter get outside and have a snowball fight."

As the Patriots contingent made its way to the school, the league filmed a television commercial for the PLAY 60 initiative that will be aired during the 2013 season. The group was given a hero's welcome upon arrival with the students waving PLAY 60 towels and cheering them in front of the school.

From there things moved upstairs for the assembly, and when that was complete the players led various stations for the PE class and helped prepared the walls for a mural that will be painted outside the school.

"I think it's our right as players and athletes and sports figures to put yourself out there so kids can see you and see that it's real and that they can be whatever they want to be and accomplish their dreams," Washington said. "That's one of my biggest reasons for wanting to be out here, especially to give back to the kids and the community."

 

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