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NFL community outreach extends to draft, Super Bowl

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Representatives from each branch of the military were invited by Commissioner Goodell to New York for the 2014 NFL Draft. They were honored on-stage and given the opportunity to announce a team selection.

KICKOFF EVENTS

Cody Latimer leads kids through PLAY 60 drills at the 2014 NFL DRAFT PLAY 60 Youth Football Festival. (AP)
Cody Latimer leads kids through PLAY 60 drills at the 2014 NFL DRAFT PLAY 60 Youth Football Festival. (AP)

Each year, the United Way and the NFL team together for the NFL Kickoff Community Legacy Project. To gear up for the upcoming 2014 season, a local school in the Kickoff market will be rewarded for their participation in the FUEL UP TO PLAY 60 Program. The NFL, United Way, former players and volunteers will participate in projects to help beautify the school and encourage students to spend more time outside.

NFL DRAFT

As part of its 2014 NFL Draft outreach, the NFL invited its top draft eligible players to participate in two New York City youth outreach events during Draft week. To continue its fight against childhood obesity and the promotion of an active and healthy generation, draftees, former and current NFL players and NFL staff hosted a two-day NFL PLAY 60 Youth Football Festival at Chelsea Waterside Park. Kids ran flag football drills directed by USA Football and had the opportunity to interact with some the NFL's brightest future stars.

In addition to the Youth Football Festival, draftees spent a morning at Mt. Sinai Children's Hospital. Draftees played games, created arts and crafts, and even got a chance to interact with patients via live broadcast from the center's in-house television studio. The event, which has become an annual visit for draftees on their draft week tour of New York City, aims to empower youth and their valiant fight against life threatening illnesses.

Representatives from each branch of the military were invited by Commissioner Goodell to New York for the 2014 NFL Draft. They were honored on-stage and given the opportunity to announce a team selection. Several hundred members of the United States Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy, and Navy Seals were in attendance over the course of three days.

SUPER BOWL

The Super Bowl may last just four hours, but its legacy lasts forever in the host city. Throughout the week preceding the game, the NFL stages multiple events and activities to enliven, enrich, and assist the Super Bowl host community. As community outreach is an important element of the Super Bowl experience, the NFL's goal is to take a leadership role and encourage others to join it in public service.

NFL Play 60 Super Kid Thomas Brown hands the game ball before Super Bowl XLVIII at Metlife Stadium.
NFL Play 60 Super Kid Thomas Brown hands the game ball before Super Bowl XLVIII at Metlife Stadium. (Associated Press)

As a part of the NFL PLAY 60 campaign, the NFL PLAY 60 Super Bowl Contest annually names its 'NFL PLAY 60 Super Kid' prize. This lucky winner has the opportunity to be on-field prior to the Super Bowl and hands the game ball off to the NFL Official prior to kickoff. The NFL PLAY 60 Challenge is also extended to the Super Bowl market and allows thousands of local youth to participate in an NFL program that offers healthy lessons and a chance to win great Super Bowl prizes. For more information or to enter NFL PLAY 60 contests please visit www.nflrush.com.

Other Super Bowl community events include major home refurbishment projects with Rebuilding Together and Habitat for Humanity the annual "Taste of the NFL" which benefits hunger-relief affiliates, the NFL Foundation Super Bowl Golf and Bowling Classics and events with the Make a Wish Foundation.

PRO BOWL OUTREACH

The Pro Bowl, the NFL's All-Star Game played in Honolulu since 1980, is an event where the league's best players have the opportunity to showcase their talents against their contemporaries. As with the Super Bowl, the NFL strives to leave a positive mark with the Hawaiian community during Pro Bowl week.

In celebration of the 2014 Pro Bowl, the NFL hosted a series of community events throughout Oahu in the days leading up to the game. From tree plantings to the annual "NFL PLAY 60 Community Blitz," the events enable the NFL and its players to give back to the Oahu community and thank them for sharing the spirit of Aloha.

The NFL Foundation Board of Directors allocates funding every year to Hawaiian nonprofit organizations for presentation at the game. The selected organizations must be focused on youth programs, education, and physical fitness. The NFL Foundation Pro Bowl grants total $100,000 annually.

The NFL conducts a series of community outreach programs during Pro Bowl week where players come together on a single day to leave a permanent legacy in the Pro Bowl host community through various projects. In honor of the 2014 Pro Bowl, these projects included building a playground at a local school, a Punt, Pass & Kick clinic with athletes from the Special Olympics of Hawaii and NFL PLAY 60 youth football clinics with military families at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and surrounding military installations.

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