Tom Brady spent lots of quality time bonding with the buddies this weekend – playing in the game and racing in the criterium. Brady rode with buddy participant Chris Harrington. Former Patriots players Scott Zolack and Dan Koppen also rode in the Friendship Races with their buddies.
16th Annual Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port Raises MORE THAN $5 Million for Best Buddies International
BOSTON, MAY 31, 2015 – More than 2,500 people participated in the 16th Annual Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port, a run, walk and cycle fundraiser from Boston to Hyannis Port, on May 29-30. The Challenge raised more than $5 million in total donations for Best Buddies International, a nonprofit dedicated to creating opportunities for friendship, employment and leadership training for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Tom Brady, New England Patriots Quarterback and Best Buddies Global Ambassador, served as Honorary Co-Chair and led top fundraising Team Tom Brady to the finish line. Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri and Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy III joined Brady as the event’s Honorary Co-Chairs. John Hailer, President & CEO of Natixis Global Asset Management for the Americas & Asia, served as the Event Chair.
The weekend’s festivities kicked off with the Tom Brady Football Challenge and Guy Fieri Celebrity Chef Tailgate at Harvard Stadium on May 29. Nearly 3,000 spectators filled the stands for the event.
During the game, Brady played quarterback for Team Hublot and Team Natixis alongside Best Buddies participants, supporters and special guests. Past and present New England Patriots Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola, Scott Zolak and Christian Fauria, Rob Ninkovich joined Brady in the game; along with Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri. The score was extremely close for most of the game, but in the end, Team Hublot was victorious with a final score of 72 to 70.
The Guy Fieri Celebrity Chef Tailgate Party closed out the evening. Several Best Buddies participants helped Chef Fieri prepare delicious food for guests and during the festivities, during the event, John Hancock was honored with the organization’s Spirit of Friendship Award.
On Saturday, May 30, Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port participants turned out in droves for a 100, 50, or 20 mile bike ride and laced up their running shoes for a 5K run/walk. Several other celebrities, professional athletes, and special guests participated in these portions of the weekend’s events, including: “Glee’s” Lauren Potter, who is also a Best Buddies Board Member, Pro Cyclists George Hincapie, Ted King, Christian Vande Velde, and Cam Wurf, Comedian and Actor Dane Cook, Actor Michael Chiklis, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Charlie Baker; Miss USA 2014 Nia Sanchez; Miss Teen USA 2014 K. Lee Graham; Miss Massachusetts USA 2015 Polikseni Manxhari; Miss Massachusetts Teen USA 2015 Sophie Baird; Miss Maine USA 2015 Heather Elwell; Miss Maine Teen USA 2015 Syler Gaudette; Miss New Hampshire USA 2015 Samantha Poirier; and Miss New Hampshire Teen USA 2015 Eleanor Lathram. Several of them teamed up with Best Buddies participants and competed on tandem bicycles in the “Friendship Races.”
The Challenge was capped off by a celebratory clambake and private concert by special musical 38 Special, who played several of their biggest hits. During the festivities, Anthony K. Shriver, Founder and Chairman, Best Buddies International, encouraged guests to “Sponsor a Buddy” (to attend the Best Buddies International Leadership Conference this July) through the Tom Brady Football Toss. Brady tossed signed footballs to guests who paid $1,000 or more for each one, giving numerous buddies a chance to attend the Conference. In total, the football tosses raised more than $200,000 at both Friday’s tailgate celebration and Saturday’s clambake in Hyannis Port.
Overall, the weekend had many highlights:
*Buddy Ambassador Marlana VanHoose kicked off the weekend at the Tom Brady Football Challenge with an amazing performance of the National Anthem and continued to wow the crowd all weekend by preforming songs like “Don’t Stop Believing” and “Beautiful.”
*During halftime, Hublot’s Chief Executive Officer Ricardo Guadalupe and Rick de La Croix, President of Hublot Latin America, officially launched a new Hublot Limited Edition Best Buddies Cycling timepiece. Proceeds from the sales of the watch will go to Best Buddies International.
* Steve DiFillippo of Boston’s Northern Italian Steakhouse provided all the delicious food served at the Tailgate Friday evening, with help from other local Boston chefs including: Philip Schein (Fazenda); Joanne Chang (Flour); Chris Damian (Papagayo); Nicholas Calias and Richard Berman (Brasserie Jo) and many more.
*Chief Executive Officer of Pilot Freight Services, Richard Phillips outbid the entire room at the Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri Tailgate of VIP sponsors and Challenge participants to take home the Best Buddies Hublot cycling watch for $24,000.
*Best Buddies supporter and Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri “Cooking With Kids” initiative donated 25,000 to Best Buddies International.
*Tom Brady spent lots of quality time bonding with the buddies this weekend – playing in the game and racing in the criterium. Brady rode with buddy participant Chris Harrington. Former Patriots players Scott Zolack and Dan Koppen also rode in the Friendship Races with their buddies.
*Brady also helped emcee the clambake, announcing the names of the fastest participants and top fundraisers, including: Top Individual Fundraiser: Randall Carpenter $65,620; Fastest Team: Team Grinta (8 members); Top Fundraising Corporate Team: Natixis $263,909 (112 members); Top Non-Corporate Fundraising Team: Team Tom Brady $470,949 (214 members).
*Chef Guy Fieri cooked up some delicious food with Best Buddies participants not once, but twice during the weekend’s festivities – at Friday’s tailgate party with a number of buddy sous chefs and on Saturday during the after- party at the Shriver home on the Kennedy Compound. Chef Fieri entertained guests with a lively cooking demonstration as Lauren Potter and buddy sous chef Michael Jaxtimer-Barry stood nearby to assist.
This year’s Challenge sponsors include: Hyannis Port Club Sponsors BNY Mellon, Hublot, Pepsi, Seyfarth Shaw Attorneys LLP, Natixis Global Asset Management, Pepsi-Cola Company, The TJX Companies, Inc and Greenberg Traurig LLP; Cape Club Sponsors CVS Health, John Hancock, NBC/WHDH and Santander Bank; Craigville Beach Club Sponsors Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Bob’s Discount Furniture, Cooking with Kids Foundation, Crescent Capital Group, Eaton Vance Investment Management, EMC, Energi, FIJI Water, the official water of Best Buddies International, The GEO Group Foundation, Inc, Kobi Karp Architecture and Interior Design, Mark Edward Partners, Market Basket, The Parthenon Group, Pilot Freight Services, Putnam Investments, William Grant & Sons, Ltd., Harpoon Brewery; and Media Sponsors Bicycling Magazine, The Boston Globe, CBS Radio/98.5 The Sports Hub, Getty Images, the official photography sponsor of Best Buddies International, Boston Common Magazine/Niche Media, the premier magazine sponsor of Best Buddies International and 90.9 WBUR.
To view photos from the Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port:
ABOUT BEST BUDDIES INTERNATIONAL:
Best Buddies® is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to establishing a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Founded in 1989 by Anthony K. Shriver, Best Buddies is a vibrant organization that has grown from one original chapter to more than 1,900 middle school, high school, and college chapters worldwide. Today, Best Buddies’ eight formal programs — Middle Schools, High Schools, Colleges, Citizens, e-Buddies® , Jobs, Ambassadors, and Promoters — engage participants in each of the 50 states and in over 50 countries, positively impacting the lives of more than 900,000 people with and without disabilities around the world. In many cases, as a result of their involvement with Best Buddies, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities secure rewarding jobs, live on their own, become inspirational leaders, and make lifelong friendships. For more information, please visit www.bestbuddies.org, facebook.com/bestbuddies or twitter.com/bestbuddies.
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