By Matt Rochinski
Charlotte, NC October 22, 2012 -The Bobcats and Cats Care tipped off their annual Stay Active program presented by BlueCross BlueShield on October 22, 2012 at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Over 75 kids, ages 6-15, from the Boys & Girls Club of Raleigh, Durham and Wake County took part, learning tips to stay active from players Brendan Haywood, Gerald Henderson and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, as well as a host of Lady Cats and Rufus.
“We’re just thrilled to have this partnership with the Bobcats,” President and CEO of BlueCross BlueShield North Carolina Brad Wilson said. “There’s nothing like brining additional basketball excellence to North Carolina, but in addition to that, a commitment to the community.”
The six-week Stay Active program partners with Boys & Girls Clubs throughout the Carolinas and focuses primarily on teaching fitness and nutrition while promoting a healthy lifestyle among today’s youth.
“We’re just trying to get these kids active,” said Henderson. “It’s important for them to get out and play a lot of basketball. We’re out here having a lot of fun.”
The Cats and Lady Cats put the kids through five different stations, including shooting, dribbling, agility, cardio and dancing – all focused on doing what it takes to eliminate one of the largest problems facing our youth today.
“Childhood obesity is going up all over the country, so for us to have an opportunity to help these kids stay active is very important,” said Haywood, a former North Carolina Tarheel. “It’s always great to get outside of you area and help other communities. When you play in the NBA, you have a responsibility to help as many people as you can.”
As a former Duke Blue Devil, Henderson also acknowledged the importance of reaching out to fans in the Triangle.
“Being close to home is a great thing, especially when I get some time to get down here during our season,” he said. “Working with kids is always a fun thing, and to do this out here is pretty special.”
It was a great start to the Bobcats in-state road trip that caps off when the Bobcats tip off at 7 p.m. on Tuesday against the Miami Heat at PNC Arena.
“Bringing the brand out of Charlotte to Raleigh and other venues around the state demonstrates that the Bobcats are North Carolina’s team,” said Wilson. “I think that’s really important as the excitement builds and we watch the Bobcats improve every year. That’s what its all about here in North Carolina – the local communities, so we’re glad they’re here.”