Cross Country Painting! Amar’e Stoudemire Launched Painting Series for Kids

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NBA baller Amar’e Stoudemire took his talents to Cali this week. I’m talking about those requiring a brush stroke and not a basketball.

The Miami Heat player partnered up with artist RETNA for a live art installation for local kids at Pan Pacific Park to get kids interested in picking up a paintbrush.

In between mixing colors on a canvas–that produced several paintings from Amar’e, RETNA and future Basquiat’s and Davinci’s–Stoudemire played some hoops with the kids.

This is the first stop on the ex-Knick player’s(couldn’t resist, I am native New Yorker after all) cross country tour to promote his “In the Paint” Series meant to connect young artists with emerging ones in local communities through his Melech collection, which fosters his two loves, P+B (painting and basketball.)

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The painting showcases are all to get youngsters motivated about the arts that arent’ necessarily revolved around rapping or singing. Not that anything is wrong with that. Who shouldn’t aspire to Beyonce on any given day? Yet, it would also be nice for kids to know Jean Michel Basquiat, Kehinde Wiley, Jamea Richmond Edwards, Toyin Ojih Odutola, like they do Drake and Nicki Minaj. You’ve likely seen all these artists’ masterpieces, if you’re an avid “Empire” fan like myself.

Anyway, kudos to Amar’e for exposing the kiddos to more forms of art. Below he displays his work, and talks about his passion for painting  with “Late Late Show” host James Corden and Betty White.

Amar’e topped off his artistic visit to Pan Pacific Park by dropping a $20,000 donation. Of course he was honored soon after by the city for his charity work.

 

Man Candy Monday | Players Serving Up Holiday Cheer

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What better occasion than the holiday season to pull the sheet off of ‘Man Candy Monday’s’ section? None. After all it is the season of giving and it’s high time I give the guys some love.

While everyone is talking about one particular man that made a major fumble–not of the NFL variety, although–on national TV, I’d rather focus on the fellas that scored off the field for charity. Besides, If I see another Steve Harvey meme I won’t have anymore clean underwear. TMI…I know. Sorry.

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Chris Bosh took a break from the hardwood to host his 5th annual Santa Bosh Workshop in Miami over the weekend. Local kids gorged on holiday treats, games and took photos with their favorite dinosaur Miami Heat ballplayer for his Team Tomorrow Foundation.

Not to be outdone, OKC Thunder’s Russell Westbrook also played chocolate Santa when he stopped by the City Rescue Mission. The NBA player gave 65 homeless kids new Jordan’s and backpacks. It was one of several good deed missions Westbrook completed through his Why Not? Foundation that aims to motivate kids to ask, “why not?”

Earlier this month, Westbrook took some lucky kids on a Christmas shopping spree on his dime. Annnnd prior to that he swapped nasty school lunches with Subway boxes for the students at Fillmore Elementary School.

Good deeds by good dudes!!

 

Slam Dunk or Foul? Dwayne Wade Partners with SANDALS for Youth Charity Program

Dwayne Wade in Turks & Caicos with kids from Sandal Foundation. Image Courtesy: Instagram

Dwayne Wade in Turks & Caicos with kids from Sandal Foundation. Image Courtesy: Instagram

Newlywed Miami Heat baller Dwayne Wade is taking his charity Wade’s World Foundation overseas. The NBA champion will take his philanthropic talents to the Caribbean (and, of course Miami) where he’ll enlighten at-risk teens about the benefits of a good education. And provide sports and rec centers for them to stay fit.

Not unlike what he does in the states, except this go ’round he’s teaming up with Sandals Resorts Foundation, an org that matches Wade’s World Foundation mission to create education and environmental projects for teens. In Sandals case, they cater to Caribbean communities–Jamaica, Turks & Caicos, Bahamas, Antigua, St. Lucia, Grenada and Barbados– they have their resorts in.

The “game changer” program (yes, that’s the official name) aims to upgrade 11 multipurpose sports courts in the Caribbean and South Florida for kids to have a place to play and stay fit.

So why did the M.I.A baller decide to venture into foreign territory with his charity?

The opportunity to partner with the Sandals Foundation was a natural progression to the work we do and affords us the chance to continue to expand our reach internationally providing today’s youth with safe and fun places to learn explore and develop their potential.

Those willing to water those seeds of promise can make a donation to the game changer program here, or if you wanna give your fingertips a workout text GAME to 41444 to donate.

Honestly, I wasn’t too excited to hear that Mr. Gabrielle Union was partnering with the resort, given their homophobic past. Learning years ago that they banned same-sex couples from their resorts cast a shadow over their sandy white beaches, for me.

Yet, nothing is forever, including same sex bans, but I can’t lie and say I don’t feel some type of way about it. On one hand it’s a fitting way to synchronize two charities with one specific goal: enriching kids lives. Buuttt they’ve banned a whole group of people based on their sexual orientation for 23 years. Two decades!?. I know it’s time to let it go. The ban has been lifted. It’s a new day. Maybe so, but does it give anyone else pause over what kind of teens (is it straight AND gay or “Or”?) their willing to help?

Let me know what you guys think below.

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tinacharlesIn other sports related news, WNBA player Tina Charles slashed her salary in half to jump start her charity Hopey’s Heart Foundation, which purchases and distributes defibrillators to local schools around Michigan. The New York Liberty center launched the org in her aunt’s honor, who died of organ failure last year, and spent over $14K (she makes $100,000, according to Black Enterprise) purchasing 10 defibrillators for donation before she passed.

She’s raised $48K for the foundation so far and wrote a $50,000 check to go towards the charity’s goal of getting 100 defibrillators.

No qualms about this one. You go girl.