Winter weather didn't keep Winter SCORES Day down on Tuesday as PS 66 School of Higher Expectations in the Bronx came to our rescue and helped us celebrate Qatar's National Sport Day.
Principal Goodman and his amazing staff at PS 66 were incredibly gracious hosts after a winter storm hit New York City, preventing us from utilizing our original location, Sofive in Brooklyn. Despite the wintery weather, representatives and dignitaries from the Consulate of Qatar were thrilled to be able to witness our poet-athletes from PS 66 and PS 386 enjoy soccer and traditional food from the Middle East.
The day began with some opening words from ASNY Executive Director Shannon Schneeman and the Consul General of the State of Qatar in New York, His Excellency Nasser Ibrahim Mohammed Allanqawi. Both reflected on the importance of celebrating the impact of sports in our communities, a sentiment that resonated among the poet-athletes from the Bronx, our newest ASNY borough.
"It’s very fitting that our two newest schools are both in the Bronx, a borough of New York which has a world famous tradition for poetry and which has a fast growing passion for soccer," said Ms Schneeman. "We have a big opportunity to grow here and provide free access to the game to many more public school students."
Meanwhile, His Excellency spoke highly of the importance of programs like SCORES.
"Sports are very important for our body and mind," said the Consul General. "We believe they give you physical and mental joy."
After giving a quick but enthusiastic hi-lo, everyone was ready to take to the field and start celebrating soccer!
As our poet-athletes picked up their t-shirts and made their way into the gymnasium, our Qatari friends and ASNY staff showed our poet-athletes how it's done with a pick-up game of their own! After some friendly competition (and exceptional fair play displayed by all!), it was time for our poet-athletes to show off their skills. Our friends from the embassy were impressed by the skills and passion of our players, and the teamwork that they showed both on and off the field!
The day ended with some traditional Qatari food, which was a hit among poet-athletes and school staff alike!
A huge thank you to Mr. Goodman, Principal of PS 66, for accommodating us so graciously on such short notice! And a final massive thank you to the Consul General, his delegates, and the Embassy of Qatar in Washington DC for supporting America SCORES New York and our ever-growing program!