Category: Sports Entertainment

Detroit Lions’ Tahir Whitehead talks school and life success with Detroit fifth-graders

DETROIT, Mich. – Detroit Lions linebacker Tahir Whitehead demonstrated healthy eating and engaged in fitness fun today with a group of fifth-graders to share ways students at Detroit’s Fisher Magnet Upper Academy can be healthier and fitter during this festive time of year, while underscoring the importance of education.

Together with a team from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Michigan State University Extension, Whitehead prepared a healthy holiday-inspired snack and participated in fun relay races.

Students also learned about the support teams from MDHHS, including an on-site Community Schools coordinator, a Pathways to Potential success coach and a MDHHS-funded school-based health center and community partners available at their school to help them and their families.

“Tahir is inspiring students to get active, stay healthy and develop the habits that will help them to succeed in school and life,” said Nick Lyon, director of MDHHS. “We are pleased to team up with him this football season to reach students with the same positive messages and habits our department works to share and spread every day with students and their families.”

Reaching students with positive health and fitness messages and role models just as they are approaching their middle school years can help set them up for school and life success.

“I can relate to these students. I want to help them develop some of the habits that will make a difference in their lives and have some fun doing it,” Whitehead said. “My background is similar to many of these students. If my story can help them to overcome obstacles and set themselves up for success in school and life then it’s my way of paying it forward.”

Fisher Magnet Upper Academy is one of six community schools in Detroit that are partnering with MDHHS.

A community school model creates a school where parents, teachers and the community work together to support the academic success and healthy development of all students in the school.

The other Detroit community schools are Mackenzie Elementary-Middle School, East English Village Preparatory Academy, Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School, Detroit International Academy and Osborne College Preparatory Academy.

Whitehead is donating his free time on select Tuesdays during football season to help kids in Detroit and make more people aware of the ways we can help children and their families tackle obstacles to opportunities that impede success and their long-term self-sufficiency. These school programs touch on health, fitness and staying/succeeding in school.

Physical fitness, nutrition and positive behaviors including staying in school, getting regular check-ups, avoiding drugs and alcohol and preventing violence and suicides are key components to developing healthy student lifestyles. MDHHS is realizing Gov. Rick Snyder’s River of Opportunity vision of putting people before programs to better meet the needs of students and their families by bringing services to school settings.

Learn more about Whitehead’s partnership with MDHHS at www.michigan.gov/TahirTuesdays. For more information about how Pathways and Community Schools are helping families remove barriers, visit www.michigan.gov/pathwaystopotential.

EarthCam Time-Lapse Documents Construction of the King Abdullah Sports City

WHAT: EarthCam’s new time-lapse movie showcases construction progress from July 2012 to April 2014 for the King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The new state-of-the-art sports facility boasts 60,000 seats with VIP and royal viewing boxes, multiple training fields and a mosque. All progress was captured from several unique perspectives by EarthCam’s digital SLR construction cameras for historic archive and time-lapse photography.

WHY: This significant project proved to be a massive undertaking for construction teams at the Al Muhaidib Contracting Company, who developed 3.5 million square meters of land in less than 24 months to make way for the new stadium. The new sports city will serve as a landmark structure for Saudi Arabia.

HOW: Click here to watch EarthCam’s new time-lapse movie for the King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Connect with EarthCam!

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/earthcaminc

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/earthcam

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/earthcam

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/earthcam

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BuzzFeed: http://www.buzzfeed.com/earthcam

ABOUT EARTHCAM
EarthCam is the global leader in delivering webcam content, technology and services. Founded in 1996, EarthCam provides live streaming video and time-lapse construction cameras for corporate and government clients in major cities around the world. EarthCam’s revolutionary gigapixel camera systems deliver superior billion pixel clarity for monitoring and archiving the world’s most important projects and events. With EarthCam’s Photography Documentation Services, clients capture jobsite progress photos and upload them directly to site plans that can be shared with colleagues for an indisputable visual record. Most recently, EarthCam launched ConstructionCamTV, a new 24-hour “TV channel” devoted to live construction cameras and educational time-lapse movies. In 2013, EarthCam’s technology documented more than $120,000,000,000 of valued construction work.

Projects documented by EarthCam include: National September 11 Memorial & Museum, Barclays Center, San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, Statue of Liberty and Washington Monument Restoration, New NY Bridge, Panama Canal Expansion, Smithsonian Institution Restoration, Brickell CityCentre, Minnesota Vikings Stadium, Disneyland, Los Angeles International Airport, Denver Union Station, George W. Bush Presidential Center, Whitney Museum of American Art, Louvre in Abu Dhabi, Levi’s Stadium and National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Learn more about EarthCam’s innovative solutions at www.earthcam.net.

Michigan Iron Industry Hosts Snowshoe Hike of Carp River Forge site Feb. 1

The Michigan Iron Industry Museum will host an interpretive snowshoe hike of the Carp River Forge Historic Site on the museum grounds at 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 1. Led by Northern Michigan University professor John Anderton, the tour will view the historic site, Enjoy an interpretive snowshoe hike of the Carp River Forge Historic Site on the grounds of the Michigan Iron Industry Museum on Saturday, Feb. 1.industrial ruins, foundation remains, historic roadways and the monument installed by Cleveland Cliffs Iron Company in 1904.

The hike will begin at the museum and last about an hour. Museum guests will be invited to return to the museum to enjoy warm refreshments and view unique artifacts discovered during state-sponsored archaeological investigations in the 1990s and 2000s.

The forge has its origins with the Jackson Mining Company. During the mid-1840s, the company hired workers to construct a dam and forge on the Carp River. There, iron ore from the Jackson Mine would be processed and made into iron blooms. The forge site was selected 3 miles east of the Jackson Mine, near the falls of the Carp River, which provided water power for the operation. Surrounding hardwood forests furnished charcoal to fire the furnaces.

The Carp River Forge settlement was the first Euro-American community in the Michigan iron region. In 1846, ordinary working people provided the knowledge and muscle needed to build and operate the forge. Residents built some 20 buildings, including a store, blacksmith shop, barns, log cabins and frame houses. The workforce included laborers, carpenters, bloomers and colliers. Many came from the ironworking regions of Vermont and New York.

During the winter of 1847-1848, 24 men and two women were at the forge. Historians know that a federal post office was established there in 1847. On Feb. 10, 1848, Ariel N. Barney hammered the first bloom into bar iron at the Carp River Forge.The product eventually proved the high quality of Michigan iron.

Ownership of the forge changed hands several times. By 1851, the forge population had increased to around 50 people. In its annual report for 1853 the Sharon Iron Company noted the forge and 20 “dwelling houses.” Other historical accounts mention at least “four fires” (forges) and sawmill on the property.

“This is a rare opportunity for museum visitors to physically visit the historic site. The Carp River forge site is the reason the Michigan Iron Industry Museum is located where it is; the museum interprets the pioneer enterprise, as well as the iron industry in Michigan as a whole,” said DNR historian Troy Henderson.

The Carp River Forge Historic Site was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.

For more information about the snowshoe hike, call Troy Henderson at 906-475-7857 or email him at hendersont7@michigan.gov.

The museum entrance is located on US-41E, 1 mile west of Junction M-35, in Negaunee Township. Admission is free, but donations are encouraged.

The Michigan Iron Industry Museum is one of 11 nationally accredited museums administered by the Michigan Historical Center, an agency within the Department of Natural Resources. During the winter months the museum is open Monday through Friday, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the first Saturday of each month. For more information call 906-475-7857 or visit online at www.michigan.gov/ironindustrymuseum.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.

Purple Heart Recipient Named Honorary Starter of Pure Michigan 400

LANSING – U.S. Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient David Balestrino Jr. has been named honorary starter for the Pure Michigan 400 being held this Sunday, August 18, at Michigan International Speedway. Balestrino was the winner of a fan contest on the Pure Michigan Facebook page, receiving the highest number of votes for his entry on why he wanted to wave the green flag on race day.

Balestrino, of Youngstown, Ohio, served as a Combat Engineer in the U.S. Army from 2003-2009 and received a Purple Heart during his service in Iraq. In his entry, Balestrino said he would like to drop the green flag in honor of his six year old son.

“While serving in Iraq I missed the entire first year of Brady’s life,” Balestrino said. “That was the most difficult thing I ever had to go through. I still can’t believe that I was picked for this awesome honor and I hope that I can make everyone who has served or is still serving proud.”

As honorary starter, Balestrino will also have the opportunity to receive a pace car ride from NASCAR’s official pace car driver and attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers’ meeting.

“We received many great entries from fans excited about race day at the Pure Michigan 400, but David’s submission really brought together a passion for racing and a terrific story that speaks to the spirit of Pure Michigan,” said George Zimmermann, Vice President of Travel Michigan, part of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

For the Facebook contest, fans submitted entries of 50 words or less explaining why they should be selected as honorary starter. Fans of Pure Michigan voted on their top entries. Balestrino’s entry received more than 800 votes and was chosen by Pure Michigan from the 10 entries with the most fan votes.

“We are honored to have David here to wave the green flag on the Pure Michigan 400,” said MIS President Roger Curtis. “He will truly experience the thrill of the start of the race as the cars pass under him. We want to thank our friends at Pure Michigan for giving David the chance to become an integral part of the NASCAR experience.”

TV star and Traverse City native Carter Oosterhouse is serving as the Pure Michigan 400 grand marshal. Fans will also have one last chance to register to win the Pure Michigan 400 pace car on site race weekend at the Pure Michigan tent on the New Holland Fan Plaza.

Pure Michigan is a brand on the rise, representing business, talent and tourism initiatives across Michigan. These efforts are driven by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which serves as the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business growth, jobs and opportunity with a focus on helping grow Michigan’s economy.

For more on the MEDC and its initiatives, visit: MichiganBusiness.org. For Michigan travel news, updates and information, visit michigan.org.

Nestled in the lush Irish Hills of Southeastern Michigan, Michigan International Speedway is NASCAR’s fastest track and the Great Escape, a venerable NASCAR national park where fans can get away and enjoy the very best in racing and camaraderie. It’s the love of racing and the thrill of a great time for race fans and drivers alike.

Tickets are on sale at www.MISpeedway.com or by phone at 800-354-1010.

Keep up with Michigan International Speedway via Twitter @MISpeedway or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MISpeedway. Android and iPhone can now download Discover MIS, the official app of MIS, on Google Play and iTunes.

Join our Mobile Fan Club by texting MISCLUB on a Sprint Handheld or other mobile device to 69050. Standard text message rates may apply.

2013 Michigan International Speedway Schedule

Friday, Aug. 16 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Practice and Qualifying
Saturday, Aug. 17 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Michigan National Guard 200
Sunday, Aug. 18 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400

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Learn to Scuba Dive with Michigan state parks’ Fresh Air Fit program

This summer you can learn to scuba dive at your choice of four state parks through the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ new Fresh Air Fit program. Participants will learn the basics of scuba diving from certified instructors from Divers Central/PADI. Class dates and locations are as follows:

 

  • North Higgins Lake State Park (Roscommon County), 989-821-6125
    July 9 and 10: 1-2:30 p.m.; 2:30-4 p.m.; 4-5:30 p.m.; or 5:30-7 p.m.
  • K.J. Charters Traverse City State Park     (Grand Traverse County), 231-922-5270
    July 23 and 24: 1-2:30 p.m.; 2:30-4 p.m.; 4-5:30 p.m.; or 5:30-7 p.m.
  •  Leelanau State Park (Leelanau County), 231-386-5422
    Aug. 6 and 7: 1-2:30 p.m.; 2:30-4 p.m.; 4-5:30 p.m.; or 5:30-7 p.m.
  •  Petoskey State Park (Emmet County), 231-347-2311
    Aug. 19 and 20: 1-2:30 p.m.; 2:30-4 p.m.; 4-5:30 p.m.; or 5:30-7 p.m.

 

Each location will host four classes per day (limit of four students per class), which consist of a 30-minute presentation and one hour of confined-water diving experience supervised by the instructor. Cost is $35 if pre-registered or $50 for drop-ins.

 

Advance registration is recommended. To register, please contact the specific state park where you would like to attend the class. Students must be at least 12 years of age with parent or guardian approval to participate. Classes will be cancelled if less than four participants are registered within seven days of class. More information about Divers Central can be found online at www.diverscentral.com.

 

For more information and to see a full listing of free classes offered through the DNR’s Fresh Air Fit program, please visit www.michigan.gov/freshfit. A Recreation Passport is required for all vehicles entering Michigan state parks.

Food Drive Highlights Day 1 of All-Star Week

MARQUETTE, MI – Day 1 of the All-Star week is in the books. What a day! All of the players checked in and each team completed two practices. Both teams got to practice once in the Dome, and for many, it was the first time being in the Dome and playing on the turf. The coaches talked early and often about making the most of their opportunities and taking advantage of the time here to make new friends.

However, even with football in the front of everyone’s mind again, the highlight of the day was the food drive which benefitted the Beacon House food pantry. Over 800 pounds of food was collected and donated by the players, and it came at the perfect time for the Beacon House.

A Beacon House representative said “Our cupboards were almost completely empty, and we were praying for something to happen that would help us”. That something was the generosity of the All-Star players and their families.

The Beacon House provides housing for people who have loved ones receiving medical care in the Marquette area. It is an organization that survives on donations from the U.P. community. Steve Mariucci and Tom Izzo, both Iron Mountain natives, also support the Beacon House through their celebrity golf outing each year. “This food stocked our pantry, and will keep us full for many months. We thank you for your generosity.”

Upon arriving, the players did not have much chance to relax. After getting settled into their rooms and having a quick lunch, there was a brief team meeting with all participants. Once the general expectations were given, the group split up and each team began their practices.

East head coach Coach Jeff Olson, whose Ishpeming Hematites were recently crowned State Champions, brought two of his own staff with him. Olson has coached twice before in the All-Star Game. The East team had a very brief meeting with the players, then got right into practice. They worked more individually in their position groups to start with, getting their basic techniques refined before putting it all together in full formations. By the second practice, players got enough repetitions to feel more comfortable with each other and plays began to look more smoothly. The coaches regularly met before and after practice to discuss personnel and where players could be moved to best suit their strengths. Olson’s Ishpeming staff include Scott Syrjala (2008 All-Star Coach) and Dion Brown. The other East staff includes Marty Spencer (2009 All-Star Coach), Brad Wiljanen (Bark River-Harris), Gordi Campbell and Michael Lynn (Sault Ste Marie).

Coach Joe Reddinger of North Dickinson also had a quick team meeting, then jumped right into practice. The West team also broke up and spent time in individual drills with different groups working on position-specific skills and techniques. The quarterbacks, receivers and backs started to develop some chemistry, and the lineman really began to settle in and work well with each other by the end of the second practice. As with the East, the West spent some time working as a whole group to see how the pieces will all fit together. Reddinger brought Mike Christian from his own staff, and the other West coaches include: Jerry Reddinger (Joe’s brother) from Kingsford, Chad Brandt and Logan Carlson from Stephenson and Troy Reuter from Menominee.

It is hard to tell at this point which team has an advantage. Both teams are working hard to figure out their personnel and where each player can help the team in the best way. We will have to see how the week progresses, but both teams look to be very focused on their own game plans.

Other All-Star Updates: Econo Foods and Super One groceries also donated power bars, sports drinks and snacks for all of the players and coaches, which will be given out as the week progresses. With the players having been away from football for quite some time, they will need the extra nutrition between meals to keep their energy peaking.

Day 2 (Tuesday) will see everyone settle in to a regular routine of two practices, along with Media Day in the evening. Team and individual pictures will be taken and players will be available for interviews to any attending media.

Island Resort Championship Offering Junior Clinics by Symetra Tour Players

Island Resort Championship - Junior Clinics by Symetra Tour Players

Junior Clinics by Symetra Tour Players

(HARRIS, Mich.) – The Island Resort Championship at Sweetgrass Golf Club will host two free junior clinics June 25-26, giving kids a chance to learn from LPGA Symetra Tour players.

Open to ages 10-14, sessions will be held at the Sweetgrass Golf Club driving range at 4 p.m. EST on both days. Participants will receive an Island Resort Championship shirt and tickets to the tournament, June 28-30.

Registration is open to the first 48 applicants for each day’s activities. To sign up, parents or guardians should call the Sweetgrass golf shop at 906.723.2251.

“These clinics have been very popular and are a great way for kids to interact with the pros,” says Tony Mancilla, co-chair of the Island Resort Championship. “It’s a positive program that shows the strong character of these athletes to our community’s youth.”

The Symetra Tour comes to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula with 144 professional women golfers competing for a $115,000 purse and chance to win their 2014 LPGA Tour card. The top five money winners for the Tour to date are Jaclyn Sweeney, Melissa Eaton, Giulia Molinaro, Christine Song and Sue Kim. Leah Wigger, 2012 champion, is expected to defend her title.

Tournament tickets are available now via sweetgrassgolfclub.com or at the Island Resort Showroom box office. Three-day passes cost $10 for grounds access and include entry into daily prize drawings during the event. Several area schools and community foundations are also selling tickets, keeping 100 percent of the profits. A complete list of participating groups can be found on the course’s website.

For more information: www.sweetgrassgolfclub.com/symetra-tour-2013

About the Championship

Welcoming the world’s brightest new talent in women’s professional golf, the Island Resort Championship at Sweetgrass is a Symetra Tour – Road to the LPGA event held at Sweetgrass Golf Club in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The 54-hole stroke-play event will be held June 28-30, 2013. Located in Harris, Michigan, Sweetgrass Golf Club is situated at the Island Resort & Casino, and is owned/operated by the Hannahville Indian Community of the Potawatomi Nation.

For more information: sweetgrassgolfclub.com.

About the Symetra Tour
The Symetra Tour – Road to the LPGA, is the official developmental tour of the LPGA and enters its 33nd competitive season in 2013. With the continued support of its umbrella sponsor, Symetra, the Tour’s mission is to prepare the world’s best young women professional golfers for a successful career on the LPGA Tour. Top-10 money winners will receive full, equal status for the following season on the LPGA Tour.

The 2013 schedule includes 15 tournaments with stops in nine U.S. states and a total purse of $1.8 million. With more than 500 alumnae moving on to the LPGA, former Symetra Tour players have won a total of 365 LPGA titles, including 39 major championships. Symetra Tour events have contributed more than $5 million to charitable organizations throughout the nation since 1989.

For more information: www.SymetraTour.com.

About Sweetgrass and the Island Resort & Casino

Sweetgrass Golf Club, site of the 2013 Island Resort Championship at Sweetgrass (an LPGA Futures Tour stop), was designed by Michigan-native Paul Albanese and opened in 2008. It continues to garner national recognition as a Top-20 public course in Michigan by GOLF Magazine and Golfweek.

Boasting more than 1,200 slot machines and 24/7 Vegas-style gaming, the Island Resort & Casino offers craps, Blackjack, roulette, poker and more. The Island hosts top musical acts from a variety of musical genres. Dining options include the Firekeeper’s Restaurant, 5 Bridges Pub and Restaurant, and Coral Reef Grille. Live music in the lounge, the Club Four One nightclub, a swimming pool and conference center are other popular res

Watch an 1860s-Style Baseball Game

Vintage baseball game at Walker Tavern

Imagine playing baseball without gloves! That’s how they played the game in the 1860s. Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy the gentlemanly style and fun of a vintage baseball game. The Walker Wheels take on the Port Huron Welkins on June 9  at 2 p.m. at Walker Tavern Historic Townsite in Brooklyn. Before you go, brush up on your vintage baseball terms and be ready to shout “huzzah!”

Can’t make it June 9? That’s ok!  Bookmark the schedule and catch a game later in the summer.

Reality TV Stars Join Special Olympics Athletes at 2013 State Summer Games Presented by Spartan Stores May 30-June 1

Reality TV Stars Join Special Olympics Athletes at 2013 State Summer Games Presented by Spartan Stores May 30-June 1

Reality TV Stars Join Special Olympics Athletes at 2013 State Summer Games Presented by Spartan Stores May 30-June 1(MT. PLEASANT, Mich.) – Two weeks from today, American Idol star Shubha Vedula and Biggest Loser runner-up Jeff Nichols will join more than 2,600 Special Olympics athletes along with 3,400 coaches, volunteers, chaperones, family members, volunteers and spectators at the 2013 State Summer Games presented by Spartan Stores. The Games run May 30-June 1 on the campus of Central Michigan University and will see the largest athlete turnout in five years. Athletes from nearly all of the 83 counties in Michigan will compete with a chance to qualify for the 2014 National Games in New Jersey – all while experiencing inclusion, unity, acceptance, respect, dignity, friendship and joy!

The Flame of Hope will be lit during a special ceremony at 10 a.m. on Thursday, May 30 on the Capitol steps in Lansing with a special Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) ceremony. LETR members will then spend the next nine hours running in relay style to light the cauldron at Opening Ceremonies. Opening Ceremonies start at 6:30 p.m. at Kelly/Shorts Stadium at Central Michigan University with the Parade of athletes.

We invite you to be a cheer volunteer for Opening Ceremonies on Thursday, May 30 or during athlete competition on Friday, May 31 and Saturday, June 1! There is no charge for admission.

 

Here are some of the highlights planned for this year:

 

Ø  Our Presenting and Statewide Gold Medal Sponsor Spartan Stores is back for the 29th year! Spartan Stores supports athletes, provides volunteers and feeds hundreds of volunteers throughout the Games.

 Ø  A special treat this year will be a performance by American Idol 2013 contestant and Mt. Pleasant native Shubha Vedula! She will sing the National Anthem and 2-3 other songs during Opening Ceremonies! Shubha is the first Indian female in history to make it to the top 20 females of American Idol. She will also take part in the Celebrity Autograph Signing on Friday, May 31.

Ø  Biggest Loser finalist and Michigan native Jeff Nichols will also be at this year’s State Summer Games presented by Spartan Stores. Nichols finished runner-up this season, finishing one pound shy of winning the title of “Biggest Loser”. The 25-year-old Monroe native began his journey weighing 388 pounds and dropped 181 pounds during the show to finish at 207 pounds. Nichols will be at the Healthy Athletes® Village, the Celebrity Autograph Signing, and will also award medals to athletes.

Ø  The fourth annual “Rev It Up Ride” returns with motorcycle riders from all across Michigan converging on Mt. Pleasant. Many of them are members of the Michigan Moose Association but anyone is welcome to participate by paying the entry fee. The ride raises funds for Special Olympics Michigan. An autograph session will take place at Kelly/Shorts Stadium Friday, June 1 from 6:30 – 7 p.m. before the start of Closing Ceremonies.

Ø  The annual Capitol Steps Kick-off Torch Lighting Ceremony will be Thursday, May 30 at 10 a.m. on the main steps of the Capitol building in Lansing. The public is welcome to attend! Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) members will light the torch with an athlete. Then 14 LETR members will each run a five mile stretch during the next nine hours from the Capitol in Lansing to Mt. Pleasant, in relay style, leading up to Opening Ceremonies that night at 6:30 p.m.

Ø  The 2012 Inspirational Athlete of the Year Steven Doederline of Monroe will have the honor of running the last leg of the torch run in Kelly/Shorts Stadium to light the Flame of Hope at Opening Ceremonies. He will be presented with a running jacket at Closing Ceremonies from the Law Enforcement Torch Run® and become an honorary member. The 2013 Inspirational Athlete of the Year will be announced during Closing Ceremonies.

Ø  Our Spartan Stores 2012 Healthy Athlete of the Year Ben Snider from Grand Rapids will lead the Athlete Oath at Opening Ceremonies. Ben will also be present at the Celebrity Autograph Signing. He is featured on the packaging for cases of limited edition Spartan brand bottled water. The Spartan Stores 2013 Healthy Athlete of the Year will be announced during Opening Ceremonies.

Ø  We will have an athlete Prince and Princess from each of our 36 area programs. The King and Queen of the 2013 State Summer Games will be drawn from the 12-member court and announced at Closing Ceremonies.

Ø  The Healthy Athletes® Village provides free health screenings to all athletes. This year it includes Opening Eyes®, Special Smiles®, Healthy Hearing, MedFest®, Fit Feet, Health Promotions, FUNFitness, MICHIP, TRAIN and Spartan Stores “To Your Good Life.” Zumba and a rowing challenge will also be offered.

Ø  We are offering the Young Athletes™ Program on Saturday, June 1 from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. in MAC I of Rose Arena. The Young Athletes™ Program introduces children ages 2-7 to Special Olympics Michigan, before they become eligible to compete at age eight.

 Ø  On Thursday, May 30 from noon – 4 p.m. Project UNIFY® will bring together unified bocce teams from Project UNIFY® Schools to participate in our first Unified Bocce tournament. Competition will be on the bocce courts. Students are empowered to be leaders in their schools and educate their peers about diversity, anti-bullying and respect. Special Olympics Project UNIFY® is a school-based project that uses sports and education programs to activate young people to develop school communities where all youth are agents of change – fostering respect, dignity and advocacy for people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics Michigan is excited to finish our 4th year with the program. This year we worked with 53 schools throughout Michigan and had over 4,000 students participate in the program.

Mercedes-Benz Becomes Global Sponsor of the Masters Tournament

MONTVALE, N.J. – Billy Payne, Chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters Tournament, announced earlier today that Mercedes-Benz will enter into a new worldwide partnership with the Masters, beginning at the 2014 Tournament. Having been an International Partner of the Masters since 2008, Mercedes-Benz will now become a Global Sponsor, joining AT&T and IBM.

“The Masters is the most prestigious golf tournament in the world and this partnership aligns with our strategy to place Mercedes-Benz at the forefront of premier sporting events,” said Stephen Cannon, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA. “Mercedes-Benz has a long-standing history with golf and to be associated as a Global Sponsor of the Masters strengthens our existing ties with one of the world’s most popular and widely played sports.”

Mercedes-Benz supports golf globally with a portfolio of major tournaments and grassroots initiatives. The Company recently marked a twenty-year milestone in the United States for its involvement in the sport, which has reached an unprecedented level.