Celtics Host Holiday Party at Practice Facility

Paul Pierce plays Connect Four with a youth from the Home For Little Wanderers at the Celtics practice facility on December 23, 2012.

WALTHAM, Mass. – The Boston Celtics made 60 youth from the Home For Little Wanderers very happy Sunday afternoon when the team hosted them at the Celtics practice facility.

The annual holiday party featured ice cream sundaes, board games, basketball games and more.

“We’ve had this holiday party for the last five years now,” said Paul Pierce. “It’s one of the events the team looks forward to each year. Being able to spend a few hours with kids who are homeless, living in group homes or foster care, means a lot. It’s a time for us all to just enjoy each other and the holiday season.”

Upon arrival, the youth and their chaperones were treated to lunch, which was donated by b.good. Once everyone had enjoyed their lunch they made their way to the gym, where 17 championship banners adorn the walls. On top of seeing the banners, the youth were in for an even bigger surprise when they saw that Celtics players were in the midst of a very competitive game of corn hole.

With the kids sitting in the bleachers, the entire team came to the gym and rookie Jared Sullinger introduced everyone. The 60 youth were then divided into two groups of 30 and half of the Celtics joining each team.

For the next hour, everyone enjoyed the ice cream sundae bar generously donated by Ben & Jerry’s, played Connect 4, Jenga, corn hole and basketball games.

Youth were in awe as Pierce taught them dribbling skills and showed off his best moves on the court. A few lucky girls played a game of Jenga with Kevin Garnett as the activity portion of the event came to close. Right before it was his turn and the tower looked to be about to fall, Garnett called the game a draw amidst a lot of laughter from the room.

“It was great seeing the kids having a good time today,” said forward Jeff Green. “There was a lot of a laughter and smiling which is all that we could ask for.”

Toward the end of the event, everyone gathered back in the gym for one last surprise. Thanks to donations from the Celtics players, coaches and staff, each youth received a gift bag that contained an iPod Touch, iPod dock, iPod case, iTunes gift card, Target gift card, winter coat, Celtics sweatshirt and Reebok shoes. The youth could barely hold back their excitement as they opened their bags and saw the great gifts.

Despite going through some tough times, the youth were able to be kids for the day and not only took away gifts, but also memories that they will never forget.

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