Michael Vick, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, has made a lot of big plays in the first two games of the season. Vick’s game-winning efforts are a big reason why the Eagles are 2-0 heading into Sunday afternoon’s game against the host Arizona Cardinals.
Vick made a big play in the community earlier this week too. The Fairmount Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation broke ground on a new football field in North Philadelphia’s 87-acre Hunting Park thanks to a major donation from Vick. The Eagles signal caller contributed $200,000 toward the $1 million restoration of Hunting Park’s football field.
Vick’s donation comes from his non-profit organization, the Team Vick Foundation. The field will be named Team Vick Field. It’s important to win games. Everybody wants to go to the Super Bowl. But this neighborhood effort will have a lasting impact in the community.
The field is the home of the North Philly Aztecs, a youth football team. The Aztecs were the first inner city, youth football team to win a Pop Warner Championship. With more than 400 athletes in its football and cheerleading programs, the Aztecs are one of the largest youth sports programs in the city. But due to the field’s poor condition, the team has not played a game on its home surface in almost 20 years.
“The children on the North Philadelphia Aztec football team learn more than football,” Vick said in a statement. “They learn how to be successful in life by making positive choices. The Team Vick Foundation is proud to support the new field to help these kids take ownership of their community. It is important to continue the Aztec tradition of teaching children teamwork, determination and respect for people on and off the field.”
Vick has taken a strong interest in kids throughout the city. In the spring, he played chess with a number of Philadelphia school children in a special competition at Lincoln Financial Field. A little more than a month later, Vick and his Eagle teammates went out to Southwest Philly for the Eagles Playground Build at the Comegys Elementary School, 51st Street and Greenway Avenue.
It’s great when professional athletes can reach back and make life better for people. There aren’t many kids who don’t know that Michael Vick plays for the Eagles. When you have a player of his popularity come out to North Philadelphia, it really makes a huge impression on the kids as well as the community at large.
Moreover, this announcement was made on Tuesday — Vick’s day off. The Eagles have a lot of people who can hardly wait for Sunday to come to watch them play. People go to church and then come home to get ready to watch Vick every week. After a making a trip to the Hunting Park field to see all the kids, community people and public officials this week, you get the feeling Vick will have even more fans watching him play against the Cardinals on Sunday.