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Monday, June 5, 2017

22nd edition of Jamboree! brings the community together to celebrate

Written by Lorena Palacios
Communications Intern

(View all Jamboree! photos in our Flickr album)

DC SCORES celebrated the 22nd edition of Jamboree! on a beautiful Saturday filled with soccer, service-learning projects, and activities for the whole community.

During the course of six hours, 2,000 kids, alongside their families, gathered at Anacostia Park to celebrate the end of another successful DC SCORES spring season.

Jamboree! started early for DC SCORES staff in preparation for the exciting day ahead for everyone. Before teams started showing up, the staff arranged activity booths like face-painting and medal making, set up the fields that were going to see many, many goals throughout the day, and prepared an incredibly large group of early-rising volunteers for their tasks during the day.

As the teams arrived one by one, schools dropped off their service-learning posters to display the projects they've been working on all season.

Once setup was complete, Jamboree! officially started with the elementary school City Cup championship games. The girls from Aiton and Thomson and the boys from Aiton and Tubman set the tone for all the great games that would be played nonstop across 15 fields. By the conclusion of the championship games, the expansive grassy field was filled with teams from all eight wards in Washington, DC -- a true citywide event -- as well as hundreds of families, community members, and DC SCORES partners.

As tradition, all of the elementary schools gathered around DJ RBI for chants to represent their schools. One by one, teams yelled out enthusiastically as their schools were called out by Program Director Sean Hinkle.

The first stop for many for the kids included a picture frame booth, where the soccer stars got to showcase their crafting skills. Up next, Goldman Sachs volunteers provided more color to everyone's day with their face painting booth. There were also hundreds of books on display to choose from, as volunteers from Aronson made suggestions for the kids' summer reading lists.

In order to stay game-ready, the student-athletes had stations that kept them warmed up like relay races with members of the November Project, shooting practice with Penya Barcelonista, and some dodgeball to mix it up a bit with volunteers from Grant Thornton.

All the fun activities built an appetite for the teams and coaches, so Revolution Foods was there with healthy meals, which included sandwiches and fruits and veggies to keep those energy levels high for the whole day.

Just when things didn't seem like they could get better, the DC SCORES' teams got a surprise visit from everybody's favorite mascot, D.C. United's Talon. Families, volunteers, and of course the kids smiled from ear to ear as they snapped photos with Talon and danced to DJ RBI's beats.

As the day continued, the energy and enthusiasm never slumped for a second!

The day concluded with the middle school and co-ed championship games, where DC SCORES Executive Director Bethany Rubin Henderson presented the game finalists with well-deserved trophies and medals for all the players and coaches.

At the end of another amazing and successful Jamboree!, it's impossible not to recognize the support and efforts from all of our volunteers -- from just after sunrise until every cone and flag was picked up from the field. Thank you to  the volunteer groups from Aronson LLCGoldman SachsCapital OneNovember Project DCHogan LovellsGrant ThrontonClark Construction, Bucknell Alumni, Atlas Corps, and Accenture.

Of course, we need to thank all the partners involved as well for everything they do for DC SCORES: D.C. UnitedRevolution FoodsDJ RBI, SafewayJunior League of Washington's Resolution Read Committee, and Penya Barcelonista.

Jamboree! is for the community. For the families, volunteers, partners, and without a doubt the kids! Thank you all for an amazing day filled with sportsmanship, soccer, and tons and tons of fun!

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