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Super Bowl Host Committee awards $100K grant

Members of Playworks post with SPIKE, the Super Bowl Host Committee mascot, at Loma Linda Elementary School in Phoenix on Thursday. (Bob McClay/KTAR Photo)

PHOENIX -- A Valley charity is getting a big financial boost.

Playworks, a nonprofit group that promotes fitness through play, has received a $100,000 legacy grant from the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee and United Healthcare.

Committee CEO Jay Parry explained why the group deserves the money.

"They will be doing a program in 18 schools," Parry said. "They work on citizenship (and) how to resolve conflict, as well as being active and having a good, healthy eating program."

The funding is part of a $2 million dollar community campaign for Super Bowl XLIX, in which five other organizations have already received similar $100,000 legacy grants.

Parry said another round of grants is still to come.

"Now we'll begin to work on our second phase," he added. "We're accepting applications and will make those decisions (on who gets the money) later this year. We will be announcing them right around Super Bowl 49 in February."

Applications for the grants are being accepted at

About the Author

Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I live in north Phoenix with my wife Rene' and my son Devin.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: My Dad took me to see Jimmy Dean at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in the 1960's. It was before the Coliseum was built. The only thing I remember is Jimmy Dean singing his big hit "Big Bad John."

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Shiloh Community Church in Phoenix. Devin is a high school student at Scottsdale Christian Academy. He plays on the baseball, football, and basketball teams and sings in the choir. Obviously, we keep busy trying to go to all his events! We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and long road trips. We like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.


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