Hot Shot visits with elementary students

BEEKMANTOWN The Harlem Globetrotters can now add the North Country to the thousands of places theyve visited over the years to entertain and educate others. Students from Beekmantown Elementary School were visited by Aundre Hot Shot Branch, a member of the Harlem Globetrotters, May 7 at Beekmantown Middle School. Branchs visit was part of CHEER, a program sponsored by the Campbells Labels for Education program. During his visit, Branch spoke to the students about the importance of the meaning behind the programs acronym, which stands for Cooperation; Healthy mind and body, Effort, Enthusiasm and Responsibility. To review the main points of his talk, he led volunteers through some ball handling drills, relating the drill back to each point. Throughout his motivational talk he also spoke about the history of the Globetrotters. Many were surprised to learn the team has been around since 1926 and has always had their home base in Chicago, not Harlem. Also, despite the team being widely known for its athletic antics, being good with a basketball isnt at the top of the list of requirements for making the team, Branch said. The first through seventh rule for becoming a member of the Globetrotters is you must have an education, he said. A great personality and character are next, and lastly are basketball skills. I earned this name with lots of practice and hard work, Branch added about his nickname Hot Shot as he closed the program with a demonstration of his basketball skills. Branch didnt happen to just be in the neighborhood last week. Carrie Trombley, incentives coordinator for the Beekmantown Elementary Family-School Organization, won the honorary visit for the school through the Campbells program. Participating incentives coordinators around the country were provided with a Campbells code, and the first 20 to register won a school visit from a Harlem Globetrotter. The program was wonderful. When things like this happen, it is worth all of the hard work, Trombley said. The Campbells Labels program is one of several incentive programs Trombley coordinates. Others include Tyson Project A+, the Nestle Pure Life Go Play, the Green School Project, Box Tops for Education, Price Chopper Tools for Schools, and Hannaford Helps Schools. In order to motivate students to participate in the programs, Trombley solicits businesses for donations to use as prizes. Supporters this year have included Applebees, Dominos Pizza, Friendlys, Pizza Hut, Starbucks, Subway, Ganz Toys, The Great Escape, Koffee Kat, Lake Champlain Chocolates, North Bowl Lanes, Play It Again Sports, Under One Roof, Viking Ski Shop, the Plattsburgh State Cardinals and even the New York Giants football team.

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