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Celebrities - KaBOOM! News

Pro BowlBefore they compete in the 2010 Pro Bowl Jan. 31, some of the NFL’s biggest stars are coming together together as one team today to build a playground with KaBOOM! as part of the largest community program in the league’s history. Following morning practices Pro Bowl players, coaches and Bank of America community volunteers will spend the afternoon working to improve the South Florida community as part of the first-ever "NFL PLAY 60 Community Blitz" in celebration of the Pro Bowl.  

The playground build will take place at RISE Academy School of Science and Technology, a free public charter elementary school in Broward County. Players will be joined by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith, as well as ESPN commentators Jon Gruden, Ron Jaworski and Mike Tirico and will work with KaBOOM!, RISE students, Bank of America associates and other community volunteers to construct a customized playground at the school, which is currently without a gym or play area.  

Simultaneously, other players and Bank of America associates will be working on two other service projects in Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties. All the projects are each designed to help local children stay healthy and active as part of NFL PLAY 60, the league’s campaign to fight childhood obesity. Bank of America also will donate $100,000 to PLAY 60 non-profit community partners as part of the program. 

You can learn more information about the Blitz here and we'll be live-tweeting the event throughout the day. Then you can see all the great players who helped build the playground in action when the Pro Bowl is played on Jan. 31 at 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN!

UPDATE: Photos from the build are now available on the NFL website.


Pierre GarconSunday was a great day to relax and watch some football, with teams battling for the chance to play in the Super Bowl on Feb. 7. A round of congrats are in order for the Indianapolis Colts, who will try and win their second Super Bowl in the last four years after beating the New York Jets in a come-from-behind 30-17 victory yesterday! The Colts are great champions for the cause of play, having partnered with KaBOOM! to build playgrounds in each of the last two years.

Thanks to the generosity of the Colts, National Starch and Lucas Oil, the students at Eliza Blaker School 55 in Indianapolis now have a great, wonderful place to play. On Sept. 29, 255 volunteers took time out of their schedules to build a brand new playground that serves the 300+ children who attend the school. Several Colts players, including Hank Baskett, Kyle Devan, Jamie Silva, Jordan Senn, and Pierre Garcon were on hand to help build the playground. In 2008, the Colts and National Starch partnered with KaBOOM! to give the children at Daniel Webster Family Academy a great place to play (video here).

Jordan SeenIt was almost an “all-KaBOOM!” Super Bowl matchup this year as the Minnesota Vikings, who have built four playgrounds with KaBOOM! and The Toro Company, lost in overtime to the New Orleans Saints 31-28.

More fun will come this week as NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and several NFL players will join hundreds of volunteers for a playground build on Thursday in South Florida in conjunction with the NFL PLAY 60 Community Blitz. Taking place prior to the Pro Bowl (Sunday, Jan. 31), the NFL PLAY 60 Community Blitz is the largest community program in the league’s history. NFL PLAY 60 is designed to tackle childhood obesity through programming, grants and media time for public service announcements.

I think it goes without saying that no matter who your team is, NFL PLAY 60 is something we can all cheer for! 


Parks and RecNBC's "Parks & Recreation" is a comedy starring Amy Poehler (from "Saturday Night Live") as Leslie Knope, a parks and recreation official who wants to build a new playground.

Of course, we've always known that if Leslie would just check out KaBOOM!, we could help her get that playground built. Turns out that producers at "Parks and Recreation" had the same idea, and decided to feature KaBOOM! on the show.

On this episode, which aired Oct. 22, 2009, Leslie and her team visited the nearby city of Eagleton and the KaBOOM! build taking place there. At first, Leslie is skeptical that a playground can actually be built in one day, but as she witnesses the transformation, she catches the KaBOOM! spirit and becomes even more determined to get her playground built. “Parks & Recreation” featured KaBOOM! in the episode as part of NBC’s participation in the Entertainment Industry Foundations (EIF) drive to feature volunteering across all networks called “iParticipate.” 

Thanks to NBC and the producers of “Parks & Recreation” for inviting us to be a part of the fun.  We hope you enjoy the episode, and we hope that you take a moment to check out the many ways you can get involved.

UPDATE: Read what our CEO has to say about the episode in the Huffington Post.


Rev Run and JustineKaBOOM! playground builds in the news!
Everybody loves Reverend Run, especially when he's building playgrounds! He and his wife Justine Simmons, along with KOOL-AID, helped build a great new place to play in Phoenix last week, and this blogger loved every minute of it! In the photo to the right, they're doing arts and crafts with the kids at the build.

Cruising over to the middle of the United States, our recent build with Mutual of Omaha got some nice press coverage in the Omaha World-Herald on Thursday and Friday. It was also featured on their local NBC affiliate, WOWT. It sounds like a really fun playground, too: "The new playground includes a large playscape, new tetherball poles, a sandbox and benches," says one of the World-Herald articles. "Sand and gravel pits have been replaced with grass and mulch, and volunteers installed benches for an outdoor classroom." We'll be posting photos soon, so you can see for yourself!

Meanwhile, way over in New Jersey..."Even with the rain, everybody came out excited, dedicated and ready to work," said Monique Reddick, social services coordinator for the Volunteers of America Delaware Valley's transitional housing complex, about the recent playground build in Camden.

And zooming back to Idaho..."The Kroegers gave this park to promote the growth and development of the community. Ninety years later, we're promoting the growth and development of kids," Boise resident Kathleen Fahey told the Idaho Statesman A great new playground was built in Boise on Saturday with help from Albertsons and KaBOOM!.

Thanks for the shout-outs!
Thanks to  AARP and Seattle Stay at Home Moms Examiner  for some nice shout-outs about volunteering and Play Days, respectively!


Check out this great video of KaBOOM! staffer Lisa Attman-Palmer being interviewed by Anne Pleshette Murphy on ABC News!


Here's a collection of videos covering our playground build with CaliforniaVolunteers, First Lady Michelle Obama, and California First Lady Maria Shriver on June 22. (Some of which have ads at the beginning - apologies.)

California First Lady Maria Shriver and First Lady Michelle Obama speak to playground volunteers (NBC Bay Area News):

ABC 7 local coverage:

KRON coverage:

More video:
KTVU coverage
Watch the opening session of the National Conference on Volunteering & Service LIVE (2:30 p.m. PDT June 23)


Here are some stories about our build with CaliforniaVolunteers, First Lady Michelle Obama, and First Lady Maria Shriver June 22!

USA Today
ABC
USA Weekend
San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco Gate
Politics Daily
News on Women
SFist


I don't get to feature 50 Cent's blog very often (or ever, really), but there's a first time for everything! Check out his feature on Rev Run helping to build a playground with us this week: Rev Run, Wife Justine pitch in to help build playground

More KaBOOM! in the news:
Play outside to help build a playground (Time Out New York Kids)

Play in the news:
Children ready for new playground (RGJ.com)
Playground makeover could start next week (Lebanon Daily News)
Bland playground a dirty mess (Queens Chronicle)
Tiki takes to Hell’s Kitchen playground (Chelsea Now)
Whittier PTA raising money for playground (Great Falls Tribune)


Next week's Conference on Volunteering and Service in San Francisco, Calif. will not only feature First Lady Michelle Obama and California’s first lady Maria Shiver during the opening session, but will also serve as the official kick-off to the United We Serve summer initiative, a program intended to renew the American spirit of volunteerism and service.

As part of the events surrounding the conference, KaBOOM! and California Volunteers will partner to build a great new place to play at the Bret Harte Elementary School in San Francisco, Calif. on Monday. KaBOOM! will also premiere its United We Serve program, "Pledge Allegiance to Play" next week. Pledge Allegiance to Play will provide volunteers, new and old, with ways they can engage with local issues and improve their communities. Visit kaboom.org then to see all the exciting things you can do to support your community!

The Conference on Volunteering and Service, co-sponsored by the Points of Light Institute and the Corporation for National and Community Service, will serve as the world's largest gathering of volunteer and service leaders from the nonprofit, government, and corporate sectors and aims to recharge, engage and bring back new ideas and civic energy to strengthen the reach and impact of the participating organizations.

Related articles: Michelle Obama's SF visit: The frenzy begins (San Francisco Chronicle) - Michelle Obama to speak Monday at San Francisco conference (Mercury News)


Shreveport native is one of NBA's most giving
By Jason Pugh
Shreveport Times
July 23, 2008

Watch a photo slideshow of Antawn Jamison at the Design Day

Antawn Jamison's basketball resume shows plenty of team and individual success.

Ditto for his community service resume, something that will grow with respect to Shreveport in the next month.

Jamison, a Shreveport native and two-time NBA All-Star, was in Bossier City on Tuesday to announce the building of a KaBOOM playground on St. Charles Street in the Barksdale Annex neighborhood.

"I was in the All-Star Game this past year and we did a lot for the community of New Orleans," Jamison said. "The most important thing for me is giving back to kids. KaBOOM does a lot for the community and kids. I recall as a kid, just having the opportunity to have that one place where I could go and be a kid — just enjoy myself and play. I still have those memories. There's a lot of kids in dire need of that opportunity." [More]