Champions of Sport Will Attend 6th National P.E. Day in DC

Daily physical education in America’s schools is on the wane...and two Heisman Trophy winners, two NFL greats, and an NBA legend are trying to revive it! The setting for this undertaking is the 6th Annual National P.E. Day – May 3rd in D.C.
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Daily physical education in America's schools is on the wane.......and two Heisman Trophy winners, two NFL greats, and an NBA legend are trying to revive it! The setting for this undertaking is the 6th Annual National P.E. Day – Wednesday, May 3rd in Washington, D.C. National P.E. Day® is organized by PE4life and the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association (SGMA).

On National P.E. Day, a delegation of well known athletes, sporting goods manufacturers, sports retailers, concerned citizens, and association leaders will visit Capitol Hill to lobby Congress for continued funding of daily P.E. classes in our nation's schools. Some of the more prominent people in this delegation will include former Heisman Trophy winners Herschel Walker (Georgia -- 1982) and Tim Brown (Notre Dame – 1987); NFL Hall of Fame tight end Kellen Winslow (San Diego Chargers) and ex-NFL quarterback Archie Manning (New Orleans Saints/Minnesota Vikings); and former Boston Celtics superstar center Bill Russell. Other sports celebrities scheduled to appear that day include current women's tennis pro Jennifer Capriati, George Mason head basketball coach Jim Larranaga, Major League Soccer player Alecko Eskandarian, NFL wide receiver Antwaan Randle-El, U.S. women's national soccer team member Tiffany Roberts, WNBA star Alana Beard (Washington Mystics), boxer Peter Manfredo, Jr. and former WNBA player Jennifer Azzi.

This alliance will walk the halls of Congress campaigning for the Carol M. White Physical Education for Progress (PEP) Bill, which provides grants to local school districts to purchase equipment and hire/train teachers for innovative physical education programs. This consortium is pushing Congress to pass this bill for $70-$100 million to continue this program. The group plans meetings with nearly 100 U.S. Senators and Representatives that day in Washington. In Fiscal Year 2001, the PEP Bill was approved for $5 million. In FY 2002, Congress allotted $50 million; $60 million in FY 2003; $70 million in FY 2004; $73.4 million in FY 2005; and $72.7 million in FY 2006.

On the evening of May 2nd (the night before National P.E. Day), there will be a large gathering of supporters attending the 3rd Annual PE4life Awards Gala and Benefit Dinner (Marriott at Metro Center; 775 12th Street, NW; Washington, D.C.) from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. A silent auction will also be held in conjunction with the dinner. The long list of sports celebrities ready to lobby on Capitol Hill will be attending the dinner, as well. U.S. soccer phenom Freddy Adu is also expected to attend the dinner. The purpose of this benefit is to honor the accomplishments of individuals who have distinguished themselves through their commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles for children. To purchase a seat or a table at the dinner, please contact PE4life (816-472-7345) by Wednesday, April 26.

On the afternoon of May 2nd, the PE4life Academy will be open to visitors at the Marriott at Metro Center. There, guests will get a chance to experience the fitness and assessment products now being used in PE4life programs around the country. Local school children have been invited to experience a PE4life Academy-style program and exercise side-by-side with celebrity athletes and coaches.

“It's a well known fact that childhood obesity is growing at an alarming rate,” said Tom Cove, president of the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association, which is helping to spearhead the lobbying effort. “This meaningful legislation will help provide America's children with the opportunity to learn about the importance of physical fitness in their daily lives. Our children need and deserve more physical education in our schools.”

If you are interested in being a part of this lobbying effort, please register to attend at www.pe4life.org. Once there, click on National P.E. Day.

PE4life is a not-for-profit group dedicated to quality physical education programs for all U.S. schools.

The Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association, owner of the Sports Research Partnership, is the global business trade association of manufacturers, retailers, and marketers in the sports products industry. SGMA enhances industry vitality and fosters sports, fitness, and active lifestyle participation. More information about SGMA International can be found at www.SGMA.com.

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