About 30 Youth Athletes, Commissioner Ellis, Street Olympics Board Members will Kick Off the Summer Games with Demonstrations of Basketball Dribble, Football Accuracy, Hula Hoop, Jump Rope

21 Jun, 23

WHATAbout 30 children from two Precinct One community centers will demonstrate so-called street games before Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis and Harris County Street Olympics board members kick off the Summer Games, an Olympic-style competition and enrichment program involving 2,000 youth. During the event, the children will be shown live animals that are part of Precinct One’s Environmental Education Program, which teaches youth about nature and the environment during the Street Olympics Discovery Camp held throughout the summer. The event also will feature youth lighting the Olympic flame that will be extinguished at the Final Event in August.

The Summer Games provides children in underserved communities equitable access to quality recreation and enrichment programs to keep them safe, active, and learning all summer. The year-round Street Olympics has multiple components and programs that give boys and girls experience in leadership and competition, and offers them the chance to develop important educational, recreational, and social skills.

WHO: Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis
Wendy Montoya Cloonan, Street Olympics Board Member
Finnigan Youth Education Town and Lincoln Park Community Center Youth

WHEN: Wednesday, June 21 | Demonstration of sports begin 9:30 a.m. | News conference starts 10:00 a.m. More sports demonstrations at 10:30 a.m.

WHERE: Finnigan Park Gymnasium, 4900 Providence St., Houston, TX, 77020

VISUALS: Children competing in Summer Games will demonstrate the sports and light Olympic flame

About 30 youth athletes on Monday, June 13 will help Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis kick off the Harris County Street Olympics Summer Games activities that give underserved communities equitable access to quality recreation and enrichment programs to keep them safe, active, and learning.

“As with all sports, the benefits run deeper than what you see on the field or on the court,” Commissioner Ellis said. “This free program lays the groundwork for a healthy life. And that benefits not only the children but their families, neighborhoods and communities. The Street Olympics represents our commitment to improving the quality of life of our residents by lifting our youths, no matter their family resources.”

Throughout the summer, about 2,000 Houston-area youth, ages 6-17, at about 50 youth-serving agencies are participating in the Summer Games, Discovery Camp, 3-on-3 Basketball and Harris County Aquatics Program’s Learn-to-Swim sessions. A 3-on-3 Basketball Championship Tournament will be held July 13-14 at Fonde Recreation Center. The Summer Games culminates with the Final Event/Bright Futures Fair and the closing ceremonies’ “Parade of Champions” on Aug. 4 at NRG Arena.

Summer Games activities include softball throw, kickball, football-passing accuracy, basketball (dribble and free throw), hopscotch, shuttle relay, jump rope marathon, 3-point shootout, spelling bee, art competition, 50- and 100-yard dash, chess and Hula Hoop.

In addition, Commissioner Ellis’ Environmental Education Program hosts a Discovery Camp, which teaches children ages 6 to 13 to investigate the constant changes in our environment, food chain and climate. It gives youth hands-on experience with animals while also teaching them about animal habitats.

At Wednesday’s event, youth from Precinct One’s Finnigan Youth Education Town and Lincoln Park Community Center will get a chance to pet live animals from the Environmental Education Program as well as demonstrate so-called street games such as basketball dribble, football accuracy and jump rope.  

Also, Commissioner Ellis and Street Olympics officials will make brief comments to outline the Summer Games followed by youth lighting the Olympic flame, at which time Commissioner Ellis and Street Olympics board members will announce: “Let the Games begin!”

The nonprofit Street Olympics, which operates year-round programs, implements and sustains programs that provide training, support and resources that lead to healthy and productive lives for youth.

Commissioner Ellis said the Street Olympics represents the Precinct’s commitment to improving residents’ quality of life by lifting our youths, no matter their family resources.

“This is how we advance economic opportunity in an exciting, innovative and inclusive way,” Commissioner Ellis said. “We make it fun. We make it meaningful. We connect it to civic education, empowering them to have a say in their future. And most importantly, we stay close and connected to the communities we serve.”