Foxborough, Mass. (June 11, 2012) - One hundred top high school football players from Eastern Massachusetts have accepted invitations to play in the Shriners All-Star Football Game on Friday, June 15 at Gillette Stadium. The 34th Shriners Football Classic kicks off at 7 p.m.
While the teams are divided by North and South, the players come together for the beneficiary of the event, the Shriners Hospitals for Children, an international pediatric specialty health care system. Because of the support from Aleppo Shriners and the Football Classic, Shriners Hospitals have been able to raise over $1,000,000 for the charity to date.
The Massachusetts Shriners All-Star Game is supported by its 4,400 members, which include the 14 Shrine Clubs throughout eastern Massachusetts and its Shrine Center located in Wilmington. The 100 all-star football players invited to play in the game represent 69 high schools throughout eastern Massachusetts. In addition to the game, 100 All-Star cheerleaders will perform during the game and the Shrine Uniformed Units will participate in the on-field opening ceremonies.
Coaching the North Squad is Austin Prep's head coach, Bill Maradei. Coach Maradei secured his 237th career win in 2011, making him the winningest Catholic high school head coach in state history, surpassing legendary former Boston College High School coach Jim Cotter. Assisting coach Maradei will be Bruce Rich of Chelmsford High School, Brian Aylward of Tewksbury High, Mike Robichaud of Concord-Carlisle High, Scott Wlasuk of Peabody High and John Campanale of St. Mark's School.
Heading up the South Squad is Jon Bartlett of Boston College High School, who led his squad to a 10-3 record and captured the Division 1 Super Bowl in 2011. B.C. High was the No. 3 ranked team in the Boston Globe's Top 100 High School Football Teams last season. Assisting Coach Bartlett will be Bill Reardon from Quincy High, Dale Olmstead from Millis High, John McIntyre from Bourne High, Jim Artz from Oliver Ames High and Kevin Mackin from Weymouth High.
General Admission tickets are $15 and can be purchased through the Aleppo Shriners (978-657-4202 ext. 20), at the Gillette Stadium Ticket Office, at any Ticketmaster outlet or at www.ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000. Tickets also will be available day of game at the Gillette Stadium Ticket Office. All ticket proceeds benefit the Shriners Hospitals for Children.
About the Aleppo Shriners. Shriners, or Shrine Masons, belong to the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine for North America (A.A.O.N.M.S.). The Shrine is an international Fraternity of approximately 500,000 members who belong to Shrine Centers throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Republic of Panama. Founded in New York City in 1872, the organization is composed solely of Master Masons.
About the Shriners Hospital for Children - Boston. This 30-bed pediatric burn hospital provides comprehensive acute care and reconstructive and rehabilitative care to children who have been burned. A new hospital was recently constructed in Boston to replace the old facility. There is no charge to the patient or family for any of the medical care or services provided by Shriners Hospitals. This hospital is one of 22 Shriners Hospitals throughout North America.
About the Shriners Hospitals for Children - Springfield. This hospital recently completed a $2 million renovation to its outpatient department to accommodate the growing trend in outpatient activity. After several years of planning, the project was executed in February 2009, with the end result being additional modernized space needed to handle 20,000 clinic visits annually.
About Gillette Stadium Gillette Stadium, located in Foxborough, Mass., is the premier sports and entertainment venue in New England. The 68,756-seat stadium is the full-time home of the three-time Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots and the 2007 U.S. Open Cup champion New England Revolution. The venue has hosted a variety of other sporting events, including international soccer matches, NCAA championships and high school football super bowls. In December 2009, Billboard magazine ranked Gillette Stadium among the top 10 grossing concert venues in the world over the last decade. The stadium, which is equipped with two 60,000-square-foot club spaces and 87 luxury suites, is host to hundreds of corporate and private events each year, as well as special events, such as a public address by the Dalai Lama in 2009.