Soccer 5 USA and Miami-Dade Parks announced today that Abby Wambach will be appearing this weekend at the Miami Soccer Festival at Kendall Soccer Park. Wambach has just returned from the 2011 World Cup where she led the US team to the final against Japan where the team was beaten by Japan after a PK shoot out - Wambuch's memorable goal versus Brazil was ESPN's play of the World Cup. Wambuch will be present on the afternoon of Sunday, July 31 to meet and encourage Tournament participants and visitors, present prizes, and be available for autographs and photos with teams and visitors.
"Watching Abby and the team's performance was inspirational - her work ethic, drive…oh and that back post heading ability, wow, I knew then we had to do all we could to get her onboard in Miami, " said Alan Georgeson, President of Miami Soccer Festival.
"We are so thrilled to have Abby involved and back in Florida, and I can only imagine the excitement our youth teams and groups will feel in hopefully getting that lifetime photo for their local team!," added George Parrado, Senior Region Manager of the Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Department.
"Soccer has given me so much throughout my life so I am excited to have the opportunity to give back to the sport I love," said Abby Wambuch. "I believe that in order to secure a bright future for U.S. Soccer, we need to do everything we can to encourage the youth of today to have fun playing, which is why I am proud to support events like the Miami Soccer Festival."
The Miami Soccer Festival (www.miamisoccerfestival.org) is a two-day festival to promote, celebrate and showcase the game of soccer within a healthy family environment of goodwill, food, music, and play, July 30-31, 2011, from 9 a.m. - 8 p.m., at Kendall Soccer Park, 8011 SW 127 Avenue, in Kendall. Tournament costs for teams range from $175 to $325 and park entry is free for all soccer players and families.
The festival will feature a full range of youth, adult and co-ed teams playing in various 11v11, 7v7 and 5v5 tournaments, while a popular mix of local bands will perform on stage live. Additional entertainment includes Soccer 5 Live tricks, juggling, world-record attempts, soccer walk, get-in-the-game fitness and fun, as well as a full variety of food from around the world, all contained within the soccer village. Soccer merchandise, soccer games, and a virtual FIFA tournament played on PS3 and Xbox will also be available for soccer fans. Special guest appearances by popular names in the soccer industry are expected throughout the two days.
Miami Soccer Festival, expected to attract over 5,000 people made of up soccer team members, families and local businesses, will celebrate both the international and local popularity of the game. Proceeds of the event will support The Soccer 5 Foundation (www.soccer5foundation.org) and The Parks Foundation of Miami Dade (www.parksfoundationofmiami-dade.com ), working together to create more spaces to play and learn the world's most popular game.
About Abby Wambach
Abby Wambach was born in Pittsford, New York and attended Our Lady of Mercy High School, where she was named the NSCAA Player of the Year. While playing soccer as a kid, Wambach was moved from the girl's team to the boy's team after scoring 27 goals in three games!
Wambach attended the University of Florida, where she earned the first-team All-American, NCAA National Championship and freshman All-American awards. She set school career records for assists (49), points (241), and game-winning goals (24.) She also had 10 hat tricks.
She was the second draft pick in the WUSA and played for the Washington Freedom before completing her degree at UF. She played alongside Mia Hamm for the Freedom and was the MVP for the Founders Cup III.
By 2006, Wambach had 66 goals in 84 international games, which is more goals in so few games than any other player aside from Michelle Akers. Wambach was picked for the 2008 U.S. Olympic Women's Soccer Team but broke her left leg in the final game before the Olympics against Brazil. As of July 2011, Wambach had scored a total of 120 goals in 158 international matches. She is a four-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award. On July 10, 2011, Wambach scored a jaw-dropping "header" goal off a cross from Megan Rapinoe after the 120th minute (injury time) against Brazil. The teams went on to a PK shootout where the U.S. won and snatched a spot in the semi-final match.
About Kendall Soccer Park
Kendall Soccer Park, a Miami-Dade County Park, is one of South Florida's leading soccer complexes with five full-sized soccer fields, four state-of-the-art 5v5 soccer fields, a walking trail, stage area, a soccer village, bleachers, and car parking.
About Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Department
Nationally accredited, a three-time winner of the National Gold Medal Award, 2009 Florida Governor's Sterling Award winner for excellence in management and operations, MDPR is the third largest county park system in the United States, consisting of 263 parks and more than 12,848 acres of land. It is one of the most unique park and recreation systems in the world. Made up of more than just playgrounds and athletic fields, it also comprises out-of-school, sports-development, and summer-camp programs; programs for seniors and people with disabilities; educational nature centers and nature preserves; environmental restoration efforts; arts and culture programs and events; the renowned Zoo Miami and the Deering Estate at Cutler; the Crandon Tennis Center, home of the Sony Ericsson Open; golf courses; beaches; marinas; campgrounds; pools; and more. For information about MDPR the public can call 3-1-1, or visit www.miamidade.gov/parks.
About The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade
The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade is a 501(c)3 organization which supports the Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Department and its mission to help build a world-class parks system for Miami-Dade County residents and visitors, by creating a healthier, more livable and sustainable community by supporting the Open Space Master Plan vision and principles and year-round local park and recreation programs for local children, adults and people with disabilities.
Monies raised through membership and fundraising efforts help fund scholarships for disadvantaged children to attend after-school and summer camp programs; recreational and community programs, such as disability services, and health and wellness initiatives for people of all ages, from the very young to senior citizens; and Open Space Master Plan initiatives, such as the development of Trailways, Bikeways and safe access to parks and open spaces.
About Soccer 5 USA
The evolution of 5v5 soccer in the USA, a game for all ages and skill levels for all who play soccer, talk soccer, and shop soccer. Soccer 5's mission is to see 5 v 5 soccer being played in every city around the USA via its platform of Soccer 5 USA operations, Soccer 5 live video and forums, the Soccer 5 Academy and a Soccer 5 shop powered by passion! For further information on Soccer 5 USA, contact Scott Georgeson, President, US Soccer 5, LLC, Tel: 1-888-575-2976.
About Soccer 5 Foundation
The Soccer 5 Foundation supports the growth of soccer in Miami to promote and encourage a healthy, active lifestyle within the local community. Funds are distributed to create spaces to play, grants for coaching tuition and developmental scholarships amongst other initiatives.
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