C's Visit Wetherbee School for Recycling Event
LAWRENCE, Mass. – Entering the Wetherbee School Thursday morning, one could feel a high level of excitement as students were decked out in Celtics green and posters lined the walls to welcome their guests. Boston Celtics player Jeff Green, Legend Walter McCarty, Lucky, JN Phillips CEO Bob Rosenfield and staff members from the Celtics and JN Phillips were on hand to speak about the importance of recycling and being environment friendly.
During the previous 10 days, students across all grades at the Wetherbee School participated in a recycling contest. The class that recycled the most plastic bottles received the surprise of attending a future Celtics game and spending time with Green.
To kick off the event, both Celtics and JN Phillips volunteers read an environmentally friendly book, titled I Can Save the Earth to the elementary classes. A student ambassador from each classroom greeted the volunteers in the gym and then led them to their room. Green, along with Rosenfield, traveled to Ms. Gonzalez’s seventh-grade class as they were the winners of the contest, recycling more than 14,000 items alone. McCarty read to Ms. Fumero’s kindergarten class that finished in second place with more than 12,500 items recycled, while Lucky visited Ms. Capua’s first-grade class that finished in third place with more than 8,500 recycled items.
After volunteers read to their classroom and answered questions, students led the volunteers back to the gymnasium where the entire school filed in with excitement to see the Celtics VIPs and the volunteers. Director of Community Relations and Player Development Matt Meyersohn emceed the assembly and started by introducing each VIP guest individually. As each guest entered the gym, Wetherbee students and staff erupted with applause.
Rosenfield addressed the youth first, focusing on the number five as a theme to help spread the word about recycling.
“Over the course of the recycling contest and today, you all have learned about the importance of recycling,” said Rosenfield. “I want each of you to go home and tell five people about recycling. Then have them do the same. If we continue to do this, within 10 days everybody on the planet will know about recycling.”
After thanking the school for their hospitality and hard work toward recycling, Rosenfield asked the audience, “When we go home tonight, what’s number we are all going to remember?”
Students and staff shouted out, “FIVE!”
Next, Meyersohn welcomed McCarty to the microphone to discuss the importance of education with the audience.
“You all can accomplish anything you put your mind to as long as you educate yourself,” he said. “Being on time, listening to your teachers and being respectful are all steps to take to properly educate yourselves.”
As the youth listened intently, McCarty continued, “I was fortunate to win a college basketball championship and make it to the NBA, but when people ask what my most prized accomplishment is, I say earning my college degree.”
Before letting McCarty leave the stage, Meyersohn made it clear to the audience how McCarty is currently working on another dream of his, releasing an audio album.
Immediately the crowd of students yelled out, “SING, SING!” McCarty acquiesced and sang a verse that was followed by a round of applause.
Green addressed the students next and received cheers from all directions. Meyersohn asked Green to share one of his most memorable stories with the crowd that involved school.
Green responded, “The first time I ever saw my dad cry was when I received my college education.”
Having left college early after his junior year to achieve his dream of playing in the NBA, Green returned to Georgetown University last year earning his degree.
“I was out an entire year from basketball because I needed heart surgery,” Green explained. “During that time I made the decision to go back to earn my degree. Education creates so many different avenues and gives you opportunities to succeed, so make education a priority!”
One last surprise was in store for the Wetherbee School before concluding the event. Celtics mascot Lucky performed an unparalleled dunk show for the audience. Flying through the air, Lucky executed multiple aerodynamic dunks that dropped the jaws of the audience, including Green himself.
Signaling to the audience one more dunk the crowd began to chant, “LUCKY! LUCKY! LUCKY!” With the help of the school’s principal, Colleen Lennon, holding the basketball by the goal, Lucky sprinted to the hoop, flipped in the air, grabbed the ball and dunked it home.
As Lucky concluded the event with a slam dunk, Meyersohn thanked the school for their commitment to the event by successfully recycling more than 82,000 total items.