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RAVE Foundation and Seattle Storm Host Community Celebration and Adaptive Sports Event at Midway Park in Des Moines this Saturday

August 3, 2021 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Seattle Sounders FC News Release


SEATTLE, WASH. - This Saturday, August 7, from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. PT, Seattle Sounders FC's charitable arm, RAVE Foundation and the Seattle Storm, together with Symetra Life Insurance Company, are hosting an in-person community celebration for the multi-purpose playspace the trio constructed at Midway Park in Des Moines last summer, including free soccer and basketball skills training and a soccer and basketball giveaway for youth.

Adding to the day, RAVE and the Storm are joined by nonprofits Seattle Adaptive Sports and the Here and Now Project for a special adaptive sports event at Midway Park from 1:00-3:00 p.m. PT. The event features special guests and free play power-chair soccer and basketball - with extra chairs provided for people of all abilities to experience power-chair sports for themselves.

Festivities begin with the community celebration - an in-person event following the virtual grand opening of Midway's renovated playspace that took place last summer. Speakers from Sounders FC, Seattle Storm and Symetra will join Des Moines Mayor Matt Pina in the festivities, and children from the Midway community are encouraged to attend, as this youth-focused event will close with soccer and basketball skills training, and a soccer and basketball giveaway.

The multi-purpose recreation space at Midway Park is a donation to the community from RAVE Foundation and the Storm, with generous support from Symetra Life Insurance Company. Together, the trio collaborated to invest in this new court intended for free play, meaning that the courts are unrentable by groups or teams, ensuring they remain open at all times for the communities they serve. Situated just east of Pacific Highway in a green space desert, Midway Park provides a crucial safe place to play for nearby youth. The new dual soccer and basketball court will be free to all who visit and serves to inspire play and community pride. More information can be found at RaveFoundation.org/Midway.

Now completed, the court includes specially designed soccer goals and basketball backboards, with artwork that was contributed by students at Midway Elementary as part of a virtual Goals & Hoops For Art event last summer. Sounders FC Brand Ambassador and former player Brad Evans and Seattle Storm Associate Head Coach Noelle Quinn joined students as they put imaginations to paper in the art event, led by Midway Elementary Principal Debbie Ellis and Highline Public Schools teacher Marianne Schneeman. The artwork from students was used to add bright and personal touches on Midway Park's goals and hoop structures at the new court. Youth from the Midway community also participated in a virtual soccer and basketball clinic, hosted by Brad Evans and former Seattle Storm player Sami Whitcomb.

Following the community celebration, the Midway court is put to use with a special adaptive sports event, hosted by RAVE, the Storm, Seattle Adaptive Sports and the Here and Now Project. The event supports Sounders FC's dedication to Defend the Right to Play, one of the four core social justice arenas for change championed by the club's official Social Justice Framework. Sounders FC and RAVE Foundation believe that the right to play is a human right, and are committed to providing opportunities for free play, regardless of physical ability.

Stakeholders from each participating organization will briefly address the community, followed by free play opportunities for power-chair soccer and basketball. Extra chairs will be on hand to allow people of all abilities the chance to experience power-chair sports.

Special guests at the event include Seattle Storm National Wheelchair Basketball Association team.

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