Photo courtesy Bethlehem Steel FC
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Bethlehem Steel FC announced on Thursday the club will participate in ‘Soccer Night in PA for Sandy Hook’, on Tuesday, June 27. The club will be teaming up with West Chester United, Newtown Pride FC and the Premier Development League’s Reading United AC to play a pair of matches while also raising funds and awareness for Newtown Youth and Family Services. The games will begin at 6 p.m. at WCUSC Turf Field in West Chester, Pa.
Steel FC will play in the opening match of the charity event, playing Newtown Pride FC at 6 p.m. followed by Reading United, the official PDL affiliate of the Philadelphia Union, facing off against West Chester United around 8 p.m. Adult entry is a $5 donation while children under 18 will be allowed free admission. All children are asked to wear their local team jerseys to the event, to show their team pride for Newtown.
All proceeds from the event will go directly to NY&FS which helps with peer-to-peer mentoring groups which are greatly needed in the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School that took place in Dec. 2012.
“It’s a horrible tragedy that the community has suffered and continues to live with and any opportunity for us to alleviate any of their anxiety in some small way, is something we welcome and take pride in participating in,” Bethlehem Steel FC Head Coach Brendan Burke said. “When you look at how soccer helped Brazil and the communities impacted when the plane carrying the Chapecoense soccer team went down in 2016, killing 71 of 77 aboard, it just shows what soccer can do at its best. The game changes lives and I hope that by doing our part to help Newtown that our players will be able to take this experience and bring it to their communities by showing that they can help others through our sport.”
Along with soccer matches, the event will feature inflatables and bounce houses for children as well as face painting, food trucks, band, first responder activities and a soccer clinic by Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association. During the matches, supporters will be able honor and thank local first responders from the region for their dedication and service to their communities. Also attending the event will be a group from the Newtown Youth and Family Services.
For more than 30 years the agency has provided mental health and community support services to the greater Newtown area. NY&FS continues to provide after school activities, support groups, social groups for children with autism spectrum disorder, and programs for preschool, youth, and teens as well as provide financial assistance for counseling to children and families. The agency has helped over 1,200 individuals who sought help after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary.
Newtown Pride FC is a member of the Connecticut Soccer League, an amateur adult league that has existed since 1947. Newtown Pride is currently in the midst of the league’s playoffs, after going unbeaten to win the regular season title while scoring 39 goals in 10 games. The club will play for the CSL Championship on June 25th.
Gates at the WCUSC Turf Field will open at 5 p.m. ET. The field is located at 601 Westtown Rd, in West Chester, Pa.