NBA, Tyson Foods Head to San Antonio for Second of Five Court...

NBA, Tyson Foods Head to San Antonio for Second of Five Court Refurbishments in 2006

George Gervin joins forces with Nationwide U.S. Hispanic initiative ‘Es tu Cancha (It’s Your Court)’ to tackle growing incidence of obesity in Latino children


Miami, FL–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–May 26, 2006–NBA en Español, the National Basketball Association’s U.S. Hispanic initiative, and Tyson Foods, the world’s largest processor and marketer of chicken, beef and pork, announced today the unveiling of a fully renovated basketball court in San Antonio. This marks the second of five court refurbishments scheduled under the initiative in the U.S for 2006.

The community outreach program, “Es Tu Cancha (It’s Your Court),” is part of the league’s NBA Cares platform and focuses on refurbishing basketball courts in Hispanic neighborhoods across the country to combat the growing incidence of childhood obesity, which disproportionately affects Hispanic Latino youth in comparison to non-Hispanic adolescents.

The restored basketball court at Mario Farias Park marks the seventh refurbishment in the NBA’s overall initiative to provide Latino kids and families with a safe and attractive place to be active, and the second as part of the league’s and Tyson’s joint renovation efforts in 2006. According to local officials, Mario Farias Park (zip code 78207) has a 96 percent Hispanic demographic and the highest incidence of diabetes in the United States.

“We strongly believe in providing our city with safe playing environments and promoting physical activity through basketball,” said NBA Legend, George Gervin. “This joint effort between the NBA and Tyson Foods is a great way to serve our local community and encourage our local families to be healthy and active.”

The number of adolescents who are overweight has tripled since 1980 and the prevalence among younger children has more than doubled. Obesity in children and adolescents is generally caused by a lack of physical activity, unhealthy eating patterns, or a combination of the two. Genetics and social factors also influence eating and exercise patterns. Addressing this issue means first, learning how to judge appropriate weight in order to better assess whether there is a problem; and second, understanding that being overweight is not a question of cosmetics but rather a matter of health – both physical and emotional.

Looking at the long-term consequences, overweight adolescents have a 70 percent chance of becoming overweight or obese adults, which increases to 80 percent if one or more parent is overweight or obese. Obesity in adulthood increases the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, arthritis and a general poor health status.

“‘Es Tu Cancha’ is a natural extension of the ‘Powered by Tyson’ branding campaign,” said Bob Corscadden, Tyson Foods senior vice president and chief marketing officer. “The effort emphasizes the importance of health and wellness, and how exercise, coupled with a proper diet can power a better life. It also intersects with the ‘Powering the Spirit’ platform of the campaign, which strives to continually improve the quality of life for communities around the country.”

Programs like “Es tu Cancha (It’s Your Court)” provide local families with a better understanding about the importance of healthy diets, exercise and being active. Proper nutrition is particularly important to ensure a healthy lifestyle, and protein — like that found in chicken, beef and pork products — is an important part of any well-balanced diet.

“This nationwide initiative is a major component of the NBA’s U.S. Hispanic efforts and serves as a major platform for children to be active, while providing Latinos across the U.S. the opportunity to experience our sport first-hand,” said Vincent Burniske, Senior Director Marketing Partnerships and Television for NBA Latin America/U.S. Hispanic. “Given its corporate vision, Tyson was the ideal partner for us to educate Latinos about the importance of combining a well-balanced diet with physical activity.”

The unveiling of the Mario Farias Park will feature a variety of activities including the participation of NBA Legend, George Gervin, Coyote, the San Antonio Spurs mascot, team Dancers and Tyson Food’s Protein Patrol. Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA kids from surrounding Hispanic neighborhoods will also participate in the event’s basketball activities, along with city officials who will join local families in “Es tu Cancha (It’s Your Court)” festivities. Upcoming “Es tu Cancha (It’s Your Court)” refurbishments will head to Chicago, Miami and Houston between late June and early August.

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NBA, Tyson Foods Head to San Antonio for Second of Five Court Refurbishments in 2006