BRIDGEVIEW, Ill.(Jan. 9, 2019) – The Chicago Fire Foundation, the charitable arm of the Chicago Fire Soccer Club, today announced the details for its 2019 Season Kickoff Gala, presented by Magellan Corporation. The gala is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from 6-9 p.m. CT at The Geraghty (2520 South Hoyne Ave., Chicago, Ill.).
Proceeds from the gala will benefit the Fire Foundation’s award-winning P.L.A.Y.S. (Participate, Learn, Achieve, Youth Soccer) program, which aims to enhance the academic performance and development of key social and emotional (SEL) skills of elementary school students through a sports-based curriculum. This year’s event marks the Fire Foundation’s inaugural gala. Previously held as a Season Kickoff Luncheon, proceeds from the gala will enable the Fire Foundation to increase its P.L.A.Y.S. programming from 22 to 30 Chicago Public Schools, benefitting more than 700 elementary students in the greater Chicago area.
Tickets to attend the gala are now available for purchase by clicking here.
Designed as a cocktail-attire event, the gala will feature a reception, dinner and an extensive silent auction that will allow attendees to bid on autographed Fire gear, additional sports memorabilia, gift certificates and much more. Attendees will also have the opportunity to meet the Chicago Fire’s coaches and players ahead of the Club’s 22nd season in Major League Soccer.
“We are delighted to announce a new approach to this year’s season kickoff,” said Chicago Fire Soccer Club Chief Operating Officer John Urban. “Our previous luncheon events have clearly made an impact on the Chicago community, and this year’s new gala format will allow us to aim even higher as we create more opportunities for students in Chicagoland.”
The signature program for the Fire Foundation, P.L.A.Y.S. is helping to change the trajectory of underserved youth in Chicago through innovative and enriching sports-based programming. Recognizing two major voids within the Chicago community, P.L.A.Y.S. was created to address the lack of after-school programming and the need to improve academic performance in Chicago Public Schools. Through a soccer and SEL based curriculum, program participants engage in five out-of-school hours per week over 10 weeks and participate in three game days. P.L.A.Y.S. has engaged more than 2,500 students since the inception of the program in 2013.
Established in 1998, the Chicago Fire Foundation is committed to improving the quality of life throughout Chicagoland by leveraging its resources and expertise in the area of soccer to provide sports-based youth development and direct-service programs to underserved communities. Additional information on the Chicago Fire Foundation can be found by clicking here.