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Healthy Parks, Healthy Portland

Phone: 503-823-PLAY (7529)

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1120 SW Fifth Ave., Suite 1302, Portland, OR 97204

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Portland Parks & Recreation Announces Soccer Day: The Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament Kick-off Event

 

Celebration on April 10 with City Leaders, Portland Timbers’ Steven Evans

(Portland, OR) –

Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R)’s Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament is proud to invite prospective players, coaches, and sponsors to David Douglas High School this Thursday for a special Soccer Day. Soccer Day is the kick-off/sign-up event for this year’s Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament. Portland Timbers midfielder Steven Evans will be a special guest. PP&R’s Creative Youth Soccer Leaders encourage teens to come out to meet Evans, and to learn more about the upcoming 5th annual tournament, to be held July 3 & 4, 2014, at Delta Park. Teams, coaches, and volunteers may register at this Thursday’s event.

WHAT: Soccer Day: The 5th Annual Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament info and registration celebration

WHEN: Thursday, April 10, 4pm-5:30pm

WHERE: David Douglas High School cafeteria, 1001 SE 135th Ave.

WHO: Join Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz, Portland Fire & Rescue Chief Erin Janssens, Portland Police Assistant Chief Michael Crebs, Portland Timbers midfielder Steven Evans, coaches, PP&R staff, and tournament volunteers. Hosted by Portland Parks & Recreation’s Creative Youth Soccer Leaders.

The Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament engages underserved and underrepresented immigrant and refugee youth who’ve come to Portland from all over the world, representing nearly two dozen ethnicities and cultures. This event is an important celebration of diversity, family, partnership, and integration in Portland.

“When we talk about ‘closing the play gap’ here in Portland, we mean providing for people who need parks, recreation and play the most,” says Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz. “The Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament and its related activities help foster awareness about what our city offers for people new to Portland – athletic, educational, career opportunities and more - through the international language of football - also known as soccer here in Portland.”

Commissioner Fritz will be joined by Portland Timbers midfielder Steven Evans at the kick-off celebration. The kick-off is just one part of the Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament, which is part of a year-round educational and life skills program put on by City of Portland staff, partners, and volunteers.

“The Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament is about much more than a game,” says Polo Catalani of the Office of Equity and Human Rights. “It’s about investing our efforts now to embrace the changing face of our city, about integrating people new to both Portland and the United States into our society and our quality of life, and about showing them how to take part in democracy.”

Catalani notes that one in five Portlanders are now foreign-born, and nearly half of area public school students belong to ethnic minority families. In many underserved north and east Portland neighborhoods, these percentages are even higher.

Portland Fire & Rescue (PFR) Chief Erin Janssens will be on hand at Thursday’s kick-off event. PFR sponsors and coaches teams in the Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament, and will host teens at a firefighter training session. The Portland Police Bureau also sponsors and coaches teams, and PPB Assistant Chief Michael  Crebs will share info on police programs and motivating stories with guests at the celebration.

About the Portland World Cup of Soccer

Portland Parks & Recreation first developed the Portland World Cup in 2010. The tournament brings to the pitch a celebration of cultural traditions and diversity - an enrichment event that links the culturally diverse communities, the Portland community, and the City of Portland. This event is a gathering for Portland’s youth to kick for a common purpose.

More than two dozen local community organizations join together with the City of Portland to host the annual tournament at Delta Park. The 2013 tournament included 14 teams and more than 200 athletes, representing more than a dozen countries. The players’ ages range from 16-19 years old.

But the Portland World Cup Soccer Tournament is about much more than soccer. Ongoing community efforts for players help athletes secure summer jobs and career training. This mission fits well with Portland Parks & Recreation, the primary force behind the tournament as well as the largest employer of teens in the City of Portland. Players new to the Rose City also learn about the wide variety of services offered by Portland Parks & Recreation and other city entities, and how to take part in them. Players tour city offices including the fire bureau training academy.

We help youth get past the challenges of being a teen, and a newcomer to Portland. We foster peace, understanding, and embracing other cultures.

Perhaps nothing could be more American.

Thank you to our valued partners

Immigrant & Refugee Community Organization (IRCO)

David Douglas School District

Office of Equity and Human Rights

The Oregon Bhutanese community

The African Youth Council of Oregon