Highland Oaks Middle School track fares well at West Kendall Invitational

 

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About this feature

Sports Scene is a Miami Herald feature that spotlights news and notes from all youth sports activities in your neighborhood. The aim of the section is to feature game notes from any sport and the accomplishments of athletes from Miami-Dade County.

We rely on the directors and coaches of each league to send information for Sports Scene. We also accept photos, but we ask that everyone pictured be identified with a first and last name and the name of the team or park they represent.

The section is free and open to anyone. Email sportsscene@MiamiHerald.com or send a fax to 305-376-5287.


Go to MiamiHerald.com/sports/youth/miami-dade

Highland Oaks track

The Highland Oaks Middle School boys’ track team was second of 10 teams at the West Kendall Invitational at Ferguson High School in Miami.

Jamir Ferguson won the 1600 and 800-meter runs and placed seventh in the long jump. The boys’ 3,200 relay team (Ferguson, Malik Watson, Pablo Rosero, Derrick Spicer) took second. Watson and Spicer were fourth and sixth, respectively, in the 1600, and Spicer finished fifth in the 800.

Abdul Olapade was runner-up in the 100 and fourth in the 200. Anthony Flores was sixth in the high jump, and the 400 relay team (Flores, Olapade, Neil Fagan, Jordan Anderson) was third. The boys rounded out their scoring with Flores, Watson, Rosero and Sony Guriand placing seventh in the 1,600 relay.

• The Highland Oaks Middle School girls’ track team was third of 11 teams. Vantae Williams won the shot put and discus throws. Tianna Jackson was third in the 100, fourth in the long jump and fifth in the 200. The 400 relay (Jackson, Saharee Davey, Coreena Saintilmond, Maryann Jadotte) was second. Jadotte and Davey were fourth and eighth, respectively, in the discus.

Jadotte also took sixth in the shot put. Saintilmond leaped to fourth in the high jump. The 400 relay (Brittany Malone, Anicia Collins, Samantha Castano, Davey) was fourth, and the 3,200 relay (Malone, Collins, Caroline Williams, Katherine Elizabeth) was fifth.

USA Triathlon

USA Triathlon aims to return multisport to its roots with the inaugural USA Triathlon Retro Tri Series, which debuts this spring with 10 beginner-friendly events -- one in each USA Triathlon region including Miami.

The focus of the Retro Tri Series is participation, rather than competition. The aim of the events is to introduce the sport of triathlon and educate race participants about the healthy and active multisport lifestyle. The events are open to first-timers, seasoned veterans and those looking to stay active -- swimming, biking and running in a safe atmosphere. Each event is sanctioned by USA Triathlon.

“Our new Retro Tri Series events offer something for anyone interested in participating in the sport of triathlon,” USA Triathlon CEO Rob Urbach said. “These races can be for athletes who want a good, safe workout, or for someone who may feel intimidated by going to a larger race. We’re looking forward to this year’s events and can’t wait to introduce more and more newcomers to the multisport lifestyle.”

The Retro Tri Series events are geared toward adult and youth competitors age 13 and older. Each race will feature a 300-400-yard swim, 5-10-mile bike and 2-5-kilometer run.

2013 USA Triathlon Retro Series Schedule

April 27: Rio Grande Triathlon-Reverse Sprint, Albuquerque, N.M.

May 4: E-Bomb Triathlon, Biloxi, Miss.

June 8: Moses Lake Triathlon, Moses Lake, Wash.

June 23: Blue Ash Community Triathlon, Cincinnati.

July 20: Big Spring Super Sprint & Kids Tri, Big Spring, Texas.

July 20: Runner’s Roost Retro Triathlon (R3 Tri), Buffalo.

July 28: Gaucho Super Sprint Triathlon, Goleta, Calif.

Aug. 4: Omaha Retro Family Triathlon, Omaha, Neb.

Sept. 8: FIU Triathlon, North Miami.

Nov. 3: Old Dominion University (ODU) Triathlon, Norfolk, Va.

For more on the USA Triathlon Retro Tri Series, visit www.usatretroseries.com.

Top Risers basketball

After starting 4-7, the Top Risers third-grade travel basketball team went 20-2 in their next 22 games winning several tournaments.

They defeated the Future Stars 44-26 to win the Holiday Slam Fest, edged the Wellington Wolves 41-35 to win the Easter Jam, beat the Wellington Wolves 59-41 to win the Jupiter Jam, defeated the Hollywood Bucs 54-23 to win the Slam Fest Tune-Up and were runners-up at the USSSA State Championships.

The Top Risers won the Dunk League title and placed fifth of 30 teams in Division I of AAU Nationals at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista. The third graders also had a 100 percent success rate, passing the FCAT.

Moving to the fourth grade level, the Top Risers beat the Miami City Ballers 51-39 to win the Florida Gold Coast District.

The stellar student athletes are Johnnie Knight, Tavoris Miller, Tyler Greene, Jayden Vrins, Floyd Ridgeway, Arturo Dean, Jayden Higgins, Christopher Scott, Dominick Enningham-Nelson and Rashard Parms.

BankUnited Center basketball

As the basketball lights lit at the BankUnited Center on Friday, Jan. 18, staff prepared for the 368th basketball game to be played at the venue since it opened on Jan. 4, 2003. However, this game would be different from all others. This was the first high school basketball game to ever be played at the Global Spectrum-managed arena on the campus of the University of Miami in Coral Gables.

With the Belen Jesuit Wolverines squaring off against the Christopher Columbus Explorers, these rival schools made history as the BankUnited Center continues to celebrate 10 years of sports and entertainment in the Coral Gables.

Prior to the start of the game, the achievement of bringing this match to the venue was recognized as Global Spectrum’s Lorenzo Muniz, general manager of the BankUnited Center, was presented the Seal to the City alongside others by Coral Gables Mayor Jim Cason, Coral Gables City Commissioner Frank Quesada and Miami-Dade County City Commissioner Francis Suarez.

To bookend this game performed by Miami’s own high school athletes and witnessed by a crowd of more than 3,400, a 3-point buzzer beater was made with .09 seconds left to win the game for the Explorers and create another memorable moment in the BUC’s 10-year history.

When the BankUnited Center first opened its doors in January 2003 with the Miami Hurricanes defeating the UNC Tarheels in an overtime win, the event marked the first time a mid-size venue had opened south of downtown in Miami-Dade County. Currently, the BUC still remains the largest facility of its kind south of Downtown Miami and continues to live up to its tagline “The Best Mid-Size Venue in the World.”

Throughout the past 10 years, the BUC has hosted hundreds of memorable events and sold-out shows, opening with Coldplay and continuing with concerts such as Green Day, John Mayer, Drake, The Fray, and Barry Manilow, as well as, being the setting for televised events and award shows such as the 2004 Presidential Debates, Univision’s 2012 Meet the Candidates, Unplugged featuring Ricky Martin and Thalia, Premio Lo Nuestro, Premios Juventud, Billboard’s Latin Music Awards, and the first Season of Fox’s THE X FACTOR. The venue has also welcomed world-renowned figures and politicians, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, former President Bill Clinton, current President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator John McCain, Governor Mitt Romney and will soon be welcoming Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

Throughout the rest of the year, the BankUnited Center will continue to celebrate the past decade by bringing entertaining shows to South Florida residents. A brief ceremony will also be held to commemorate the anniversary as the Miami Hurricanes battle the UNC Tarheels once again on Feb. 9.

The BankUnited Center, an 8,000-seat multipurpose entertainment facility on the University of Miami’s Coral Gables campus, hosts concerts, family shows, trade shows, lecture series, sporting events and the University of Miami men’s and women’s basketball teams. For information call 305-284-8686 or visit www.BankUnitedCenter.com. The BankUnited Center is at 1245 Dauer Dr., Coral Gables.

Barry basketball

The Barry University men’s basketball program hosts its annual alumni game on Feb. 15 at the Health & Sports Center on campus in Miami Shores.

The Buccaneers alum will compete in the Red and Black game of former players and are invited to attend Barry’s game against Eckerd College 7:30 p.m. the next day. More than 75 former players have been invited to men’s basketball alumni weekend.

“We had a huge turnout last year, and I would like to repeat that,” said Barry assistant coach Ryan Saunders, also an alum. “It is definitely nice when the alumni support us, and it helps us out tremendously.”

The Buccaneers will also host Florida Southern at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 6; Palm Beach Atlantic at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20 and Nova Southeastern in the regular season finale at 5:30 p.m. March 2. Barry, an NCAA Division II program, competes in the Sunshine State Conference.

USTA Florida Section tennis

South Miami-Dade County (Crandon Park Tennis Center, Key Biscayne) captured a USTA Florida Section League title during the season-ending USTA Florida Combo Women 8.5 League Championships at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach.

South Miami-Dade defeated Orange/Seminole counties 3-0 in the finals.

The champs are captain Josefina Maria Gorostiaga, Rose Haney, Catherine McManus, Magdalena Brave, Claire Novy, Karla Mihm, Elizabeth Marie Corzo-Ruiz, Carin Blanchard, Liliana Cronwall, Marilu Becerra, Alaina Fotiu-Wojtowicz, Tine Hestbaek and Cecilia Fillol.

Combo Adult teams are comprised of players, age 18 or older, in a combined-rating format from 5.5 to 9.5. The combined National Tennis Rating Program ratings of each doubles team may neither exceed the level nor be more than 1.0 less than the level in which they are competing. The NTRP rating difference between the members of an individual doubles pair may not exceed 0.5.

Archbishop Curley top athletes

Archbishop Curley Notre Dame Prep Athletic Director Greg Magner announced the school’s Players of the Week.

They are senior goalkeepers Jenson Rayburn and Tony Yeash. Each recorded two shutouts. For the high school girls’ varsity soccer team, Rayburn posted shutouts against Princeton Christian and Doctors Charter. Yeash registered shutout victories over Keys Gate Charter and Marathon for the boys’ varsity team.

Miami Country Day top athlete

Miami Country Day School: Middle School Male Athlete of the Week: Nicholas Choi (basketball) combined for 29 points in wins against the white and blue teams.

Middle School Female Athlete of the Week: Laurel Ivory (soccer) scored the tying goal in regulation and made 15 saves including stopping the final shot in a shootout to lead the high school girls’ varsity team over Dade Christian for its first district championship since 1992. Just a seventh grader, she also made 16 saves in the Spartans’ region quarterfinal win over Westminster Christian.

Upper School Female Athlete of the Week: Avery Watson (soccer) assisted on the tying goal and scored in the shootout to help lead the Spartans over Dade Christian for that district title. She also added a goal and an assist in the region quarterfinal win over Westminster Christian.

Upper School Male Athlete of the Week: Eduardo Macedo (soccer) scored against Keys Gate Charter and had two goals in a district semifinal win over Archbishop Curley.

Spartan Super Fan: Dante Davis (senior).

NFL flag football

Twenty-four teams from across the United States competed at Lafreniere Park in Metairie, La., in the national championships of NFL FLAG powered by USA Football.

Eight teams in each division (9-11 coed, 12-14 boys, 12-14 girls) participated in the annual flag football event. Teams qualified for the national championships by winning regional tournaments hosted by NFL clubs. In 2012, a record number 198,000 boys and girls, age 5-17, were part of NFL FLAG powered by USA Football, a fun and exciting non-contact football experience while developing skills and learning lessons in teamwork, dedication and discipline.

The three-day stay included hotel, food, transportation and social events with the other teams. Coaches and players received tickets provided by NFL FLAG to attend the Super Bowl XLVII NFL Experience. Pool play was followed by playoffs and championship games.

A live-stream video of the championship games are available at: http://www.nflflag.com.

Regional tournaments were hosted by the Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets and Oakland Raiders.

Regional qualifiers included:

9-11 Coed: Jr. Varsity Dolphins, Miami Gardens: Marvin Anthony, Willie Bentley, Ilias Clerisier, Dextan Hodge, Tavares Kelly, Andrew Reese, Coach Haiven Kornbluth. Mo Steel Juniors, Aventura: David Egozi, Arturo Jena, Robert Moret, Fred Nudel, Presley Pomeranc, Will Poses, Alejandro Sabo, Jonathan Weiselberg, Aaron Winer, Coach Yossi Behar.

12-14 Boys: RedZone All Stars, Miami: Khevani Francios, Derek Gonzalez, Paul Gonzalez, Rene Gonzalez, Oliver Guerra, Nicholas Lopez, Patrick McGhee, Sean Zetino, Coach Luis Rodriguez. Mo Steel Seniors, Aventura: Joey Block, Daniel Fiske, Belochi Lacombe, Everett Levy, Jacob Mars, Bradley Moskovitz, Akil Oliver, Bram Osman, Max Stein, Joseph Wolf, Coach David Fried. Mighty Dolphins Varsity, Miami Gardens: Darnell Durham, Desmond Fairell, Kaywon Hanna, Keissac Hill, Sharod Johnson, Alexander Stallings, Clevan Thomas, Coach Shequina McCall.

USA Football is the only official youth football development partner that the NFL has in its 93-year history. Leading football players and coaches in 50 states in strengthening their skills through digital membership resources, USA Football helps steer and bolster America’s premier flag football experience.

For more about NFL FLAG powered by USA Football, visit www.nflflag.com and www.usafootball.com.

JCC Maccabi Games

The Adolph & Rose Levis Jewish Community Center seeks participants for the JCC Maccabi Games.

JCC Maccabi Games: Athletes age 13-16 (as of July 31, 2013) can represent the Boca Raton Mitchell Dobbin Maccabi Team in boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ baseball, swimming, tennis, boys’ and girls’ soccer, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ lacrosse (depending on interest) and girls’ softball in Austin, Texas from July 28-Aug. 2 and Orange County, Calif. from Aug. 4-9.

Participants will display their skills as well as be inspired by the values of community involvement, teamwork, creativity, integrity and pride.

Tryouts for Team Sports are Feb. 3 and 10 at the Adolph & Rose Levis JCC, 9801 Donna Klein Blvd., Boca Raton and South County Regional Park, Boca Raton. Cost is free. Visit www.levisjcc.org for details.

Athletes interested in competing in individual sports must contact Lesley Surfer, the Levis JCC Maccabi Games Delegation Head, at 561-852-3212 or lesleys@levisjcc.org.

YouTube youth and more

YouTube at the Jim Varsallone (the jimmyv3 channel)

http://www.youtube.com/user/jvarsallone/videos

Miami Herald youth sports online

For more area sports photos, go to www.miamiherald.com/sports/youth/miami-dade.

More events, leagues, programs

Tennis Campus Kids’ Day

St. Thomas University hosts a USTA Campus Kids’ Day on Feb. 15 in Miami Gardens.

Free and open to the public, USTA Campus Kids Days are designed to expose current and aspiring junior players (and their parents and coaches) to college tennis. Food and refreshments are provided, and fans are encouraged to participate in a variety of activities such as raffles, contests, racquet stenciling, autograph signings, clinics, etc., as well as watching a college tennis match.

On Feb. 15, St. Thomas University hosts Ave Maria University at 2 p.m. on its campus in Miami Gardens. Contact Bruce Carrington at bcarrington@stu.edu.

Campus Kids’ Day is an opportunity for the relationship between junior tennis and college tennis to grow, and for players to experience college tennis. The program occurs around the United States throughout the tennis season, from top Division I programs to Division II and III programs, bringing the community together and raising excitement for the game of tennis.

Campus Kids’ Days and all promotions are open to all attending, and do not conflict with NCAA compliance issues for junior players.

For information on USTA Campus Kids’ Days go to www.usta.com/Play-Tennis/College-Tennis/Campus_Kids_Days.

Tennis classes, programs

Tennis classes and programs for all ages are at the Penny Sugarman Tennis Center at Sans Souci, 1795 Sans Souci Blvd., North Miami. Call for information on group lessons, annual passes, court rates and private lessons. Tennis pro is Ross Dubins. Call 305-893-7130.

Jai-Alai

Jai-alai is open to anyone, age 10 to 80.

With a rubber ball and cestas, the amateur jai-alai facility is at 1935 NE 150th St. in North Miami, near FIU’s north campus.

It is indoors, air-conditioned and open to all. Contact Luis at 305-389-2313 or Bob at 786-556-3574.

More Jai-Alai

Who said you have to be a male to play Jai Alai? Just as many females play the sport in Spain, France and Mexico, and gals can play it in South Florida at an amateur indoor air-conditioned fronton.

There are also leagues for males and children. Rubber or plastic balls used with free lessons by former pros. Cestas and balls also provided free with a nominal court fee. Open everyday. Email admanUSA@aol.com or call Brucio 786-629-5428. The American Amateur Jai-Alai Academy is a not-for-profit organization.

NFL/Wharton Leadership Program

NFL Player Engagement and the Wharton Sports Business Initiative will host the second annual NFL-Wharton Prep Leadership Program for student-athletes entering their senior year of high school.

The program, which runs from June 24-26 at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in Philadelphia, offers leadership training and development programming with instruction from Wharton professors and NFL executives. Last year’s 36 participants are now in the college application process.

“We are excited to acknowledge and celebrate the accomplishments of these extraordinary high school student-athletes as leaders both academically and athletically,” said former Miami Dolphins defensive back Troy Vincent, who is the NFL Vice President of Player Engagement. “NFL Player Engagement looks forward to assisting them even more through our PREP 100 series in further developing essential life skills that result from leadership in academic performance, athletic experience and community service.”

Kenneth Shropshire, Wharton Professor and Faculty Director at the Wharton Sports Business Initiative, added: “For Wharton, this is the perfect blend of sports, academics and social impact. We are excited about playing a role in developing future leaders impacted by sport, blending sports and academics at the highest levels.”

Male and female student-athletes who will be high school seniors in the 2013-14 school year can apply for the program at the Wharton Sports Business Initiative website www.whartonsportsbiz.org from now through March 15.

Thirty six tudent-athletes will be selected to participate based upon academic transcript, athletic experience, leadership activities, coach and teacher recommendations, and personal essays. All costs other than travel to and from the program will be covered by Wharton.

Among the topics covered in the full group sessions, breakout groups and panel discussions: Basics of Leadership – assessments, styles, motivating others; Professional Development – life skills, social media; Career Development – preparing for the future (resume, mock-interview, public speaking, networking); Financial Education – introduction to financial terms, tools, and the role of financial advisors; Basics of Management; Total Wellness – empowering student-athletes to make positive health decisions.

NFL Player Engagement assists players in reaching their highest potential on and off-the-field with guidance, support and resources provided before, during and after their NFL experiences. NFL Player Engagement works with three core audiences: Prep, Life, Next. NFL Prep provides high school and college student athletes of all sports with tools to help them succeed in life, focused on awareness, prevention, and education.

The Wharton Sports Business Initiative is a research, executive education and consulting focused think tank dedicated to provide practical and tangible solutions positively impacting a variety of clients and areas within the sports business globally.

Tamiami basketball

Tamiami youth basketball registration is open for girls and boys, age 5-16. Email Tamiamibasketball@gmail.com or call 305 -273-1145.

Miami Lady Express basketball

The Miami Lady Express girls’ basketball team needs funding to continue competing in tournaments throughout the United States. The coaches volunteered to train the girls, giving them something positive to do, and the parents have been fundraising.

Travel costs, food, tournament fees and lodging are very expensive for these girls. They practice at the Keys Gate Gym in Florida City and South Dade High School where their coaches teach. Contact Coach Larry Hicks at 786-301-2577.

Howard Palmetto baseball, softball

Registration for the 2013 Howard Palmetto Baseball & Softball winter season has started. Go to www.howardpalmetto.com to sign up.

The season starts in January and continues through April/May. Registration fees are $219 for baseball, $195 for softball and $185 for T-ball. Registration includes T-ball Titans for boys and girls age 4-6; baseball for boys age 6-15; high school boys’ baseball for grades 10-12; fast-pitch softball for girls age 6-17.

Games are at Evelyn Greer Park, Suniland Park, Palmetto Bay, Coral Reef and Chapman Field. Register online or for information, visit www.howardpalmetto.com.

Marlins Tours

The Miami Marlins offer behind the scenes tours of Marlins Park. The tours are open to the public on non-event days for $10 a person.

The tour includes visits to the field (behind home plate), home clubhouse, home batting cage area and Diamond Club, Promenade Level featuring the art in the facility, the bobblehead museum and the premium areas including the Suites.

Tours operate from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday, except when the Marlins play at home or when other major events are scheduled at Marlins Park. Group tours, accommodating between 10 and 25 people, are available by appointment.

For information, fans can call 1-877-MARLINS or e-mail tours@marlins.com. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket windows on Felo Ramirez Drive (NW 6 Street between NW 14 Avenue and NW 15 Avenue) and are for the time and date specified.

Tickets are non-exchangeable and non-refundable.

HOF baseball

Hall Of Fame Baseball is sponsoring travel baseball teams for 11-12, 13-14, 15-18 (high school) for the fall season.

Hall Of Fame Coach Rich Hofman and his staff will coach the teams which will practice and play in tournaments and leagues. Register for a tryout at www.hofball.net or call David Hofman at 954-804-5600 or Ed Tisdale at 803-463-2591.

Youth Rugby South Miami

The Miami Rugby Youth Division, boys age 6-18, practices 6-8 p.m. Mondays at Murray Park and Wednesdays at Palmer Park, 6120 SW 67th Ave., South Miami. Call 305-400-0134, ext. 101. Visiti www.miamirugbykids.com.

Rebelle volleyball

Rebelle Athletics Club offers girls’ volleyball tryouts at Archbishop Curley Notre Dame High School, 4949 NE 2nd Ave.

The volleyball club, a member of the United States Volleyball Association, is under the direction of Mandi Tate, Dee Rey and former Barry University player Kelly Dantas. They are former coaches with South Florida Volleyball Club and currently coach at Alonzo & Tracy Mourning Senior High School in Biscayne Bay.

Rebelle Athletics is dedicated to providing developmental and participatory athletic sports programs beginning at the youth development level. It offers a progression of sports activities for persons of all ages, races and creeds. It strives to enhance the physical, mental and moral development of amateur athletes at all levels, promoting sportsmanship and active citizenship.

Visit www.rebelleathletics.com.

Soccer

South Kendall Sun Blazers (sksoccer.org) at Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, 11395 SW 79 St. (305-630-3314).

Miami Dade Soccer League (miami-dadesoccer.com) at Three Lakes Park, 13375 SW 136 St. (786-488-5216).

Soccer 5 (ussoccer5.com) at Kendall Soccer Park, 8011 SW 127 Ave. (1-888-575-2976).

Club Atletico De Miami (camsoccer.com) at Kendall Soccer Park, 8011 SW 127 Ave. (305-764-5783).

Soccer Academy of the Americas (socceraa.com) at Tamiami Park, 11201 SW 24 St. (786-486-3804)

Pinecrest Premier Soccer (pinecrestpremier.com) at Deerwood Bonita Lakes, 11511 S. Dixie Hwy. (305-255-3422).

Optimist Club of Westchester (tropicalsoccer.org) at Tropical Park, 7900 SW 40 St. (786-370-4222).

Coral Estates Soccer Club (coralestatessoccer.org) at Coral Estates Park, 1411 SW 97 Ave. (305-279-2328)

South Kendall Soccer Club (sksoccer.org) at Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, 11395 SW 79 St. (305-630-3314).

Southern Soccer Coalition-AYSO (kendallsoccer.com) at Millers Pond Park, 13350 SW 47 St. and Westwind Lakes Park, 6805 SW 152 Ave. (305-965-0083).

Got Milk

The National Milk Mustache “got milk?” campaign launched the call for entries for the 15th annual Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year (SAMMY) Awards.

The SAMMY scholarship recognizes 25 student-athletes who excel in academics, athletics, community service, leadership and who fuel their daily success with milk.

Milk Mustache celebrity judges will help select 25 winners from across the country who will receive a $7,500 college scholarship, an awards ceremony at Walt Disney World and an opportunity to appear in their own special Milk Mustache ad.

For complete contest rules and applications log onto facebook.com/MilkMustache where visitors can also learn more about the exclusive SAMMY awards weekend and view behind the scenes footage.

Health program

Stand Up! For Those Who Can’t, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering children, families and communities through (w)holistic programs in education, culture and the arts, and as fiscal agent for the Sunshine Child Wellness Collaborative, has received a $50,000 grant from the Aetna Foundation to implement “Sunshine Fit for Tots,” an obesity-prevention program developed by SCWC for 3-year-old children.

“One in five preschool-age children in the United States are overweight or obese. We recognize the need to start prevention at the earliest age possible to promote lifelong habits of health and wellness,” said Mary Rae Smith, president and founder of SCWC. “We want to bend the curve on childhood obesity and are grateful to the Aetna Foundation for this opportunity to enhance obesity prevention through exercise and nutrition programming.”

Through March 2013, 60 children from four early childhood centers in Miami-Dade will receive nutritional education and obesity-prevention activities through art classes and dance lessons. The centers selected to receive the program are Fantasyland Learning Center in Westchester; Happy Kids in Miami Beach; Happy Children of Overtown; and Alberto’s Dream Childcare in North Miami.

“We thank the Aetna Foundation for awarding us this grant,” said Jeannette Egozi, president of SUFTWC. “In the United States, low-income families are the most affected by the alarming obesity trend. With these funds we can teach children how to eat healthfully and be physically active throughout their lives.”

For information about “Sunshine Fit for Tots” call the Sunshine Child Wellness Collaborative at 305-807-5229 or Stand Up! at 305-864-5237, e-mail jeannette@ecqc.biz.

CB Sports Leagues

CB Sports Club offers Youth Basketball, Flag Football, Youth Soccer, Adult Soccer and Adult Basketball. Visit cbsportsclub.com. Call 786-273-5639.

Physically Challenged

Miami-Dade Parks welcomes children with disabilities in its youth leagues. If you need accommodations to participate, call 305-735-7847 (V/TDD).

Read more Miami-Dade Youth Sports stories from the Miami Herald

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