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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                            March 30, 2010           

                     

RED CLAWS TEAM UP WITH KEYBANK
FOR CHILDREN’S BOOK DRIVE

 April 3 Game Night Drive Will Benefit Ruth’s Reusable Resources

PORTLAND, ME/span> - The Maine Red Claws, presented by Quirk Chevrolet, in partnership with KeyBank today announced a book drive to benefit Ruth’s Reusable Resources, a Maine-based nonprofit that donates supplies to schools and teachers in southern Maine. The announcement was made by team President and GM Jon Jennings.

“We are proud to team up with KeyBank and lend a helping hand to Ruth’s Reusable Resources,” said Jennings. “KeyBank and the Red Claws are committed to literacy in the state of Maine and have already partnered on the NBA Development League’s Read to Achieve program this season. This book drive furthers our commitment to the education of children in Maine while also giving us an opportunity to benefit a wonderful charity.”

Volunteers will be on hand to collect new or gently used children’s books at the Red Claws game against the Erie BayHawks on April 3, the Red Claws final home game of the regular season. Red Claws fans and KeyBank customers may drop off books at the Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth, Gorham, Portland, Saco, Scarborough, South Portland, and Yarmouth KeyBank branches.

To celebrate the book drive, members of the Lady Red Claws dance team, along with the Red Claws mascot Crusher, have been visiting area KeyBank locations, greeting customers and distributing information about the book drive. They will make their final visit this Saturday, stopping by the Millcreek branch in South Portland from 9 AM – 11 AM, leading up to the final collection at the Red Claws home game that evening.

“Learning to read is an important first step to being able to become financially literate,” said Sterling Kozlowski, President, Maine District, KeyBank N.A. “KeyBank is proud to partner with Red Claws to support Ruth's Reusable Resources in this important initiative. Studies have proven that successful readers become successful students; successful students are well on their way toward financial independence.”

All books collected will be given to Ruth’s Reusable Resources (www.ruths.org). Now in its 16th year of operation, Ruth’s Reusable Resources (“3R’s”) mission is to ensure that students and classrooms in Maine have the basic tools for learning by transferring the community’s surplus supplies and merchandise into the hands of students and teachers. The membership-based organization collects items from businesses and others to recycle into the schools, providing items free-of-charge to teachers across southern Maine.  

RED CLAWS READ TO ACHIEVE PROGRAM, PRESENTED BY KEYBANK: Geared towards younger students, the Maine Red Claws Read to Achieve Program, presented by Key Bank aims to promote a lifelong love of learning. Red Claws’ players or the team’s mascot Crusher visit area schools and libraries to read aloud (Crusher cannot speak, but he is a great page turner!), integrating questions and engaging the students throughout. After the book is complete, there is time for questions and autograph/photo opportunities. Schools and libraries may also use the Red Claws as an incentive to encourage their students to reach certain reading levels – they set the goal, and the team will provide the reward, whether it is a visit to the students by Crusher or a field trip to an open practice where the students can watch the players in action. Schools and libraries interested in more information on the program should contact the Red Claws at 207-210-6655.

 

KeyBank N.A.: a subsidiary of KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY), KeyBank N.A. is one of Maine’s largest financial services companies with assets of approximately $3.3 billion. Key has one of the largest statewide networks of branches (61) and ATMs (100) and is a leader in community involvement, contributing nearly $1 million to local nonprofit agencies and organizations. A strong proponent for local economic growth, Key companies provide investment management, retail and commercial banking, retirement, consumer finance, and investment banking products and services to individuals and companies throughout the United States and, for certain businesses, internationally. The company’s businesses deliver their products and services through Branches and offices; a network of approximately 1,500 ATMs; telephone banking centers (1.800.KEY2YOU); and a Web site, Key.com, that provides account access and financial products 24 hours a day.

 

MAINE RED CLAWS: 2009-10 marks the inaugural season for the Maine Red Claws. The NBA D-League team plays its home games at the Portland Expo Building. The franchise is owned and operated by Maine Basketball, LLC, which is principally owned by Bill Ryan Sr., the retired chairman of TD Bank, and Bill Ryan Jr., owner and operator of Oxford Plains Speedway. Jon Jennings, a partner in Maine Basketball, LLC and former Boston Celtics assistant coach, serves as the team’s president and general manager.

 

NBA Development League: The NBA Development League, founded in 2001, is the NBA’s official minor league whose teams have direct affiliations to NBA franchises.  For the 2009-10 season, the league will feature 16 teams – including the debut of the Maine Red Claws and the Springfield Armor.  A proven developer of talent, 20 percent of players in the NBA at the conclusion of the 2008-09 season boasted NBA D-League experience, while the league continues to develop coaches, referees, and front office staff for the NBA and its teams.  In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA D-League Cares programs.  The NBA D-League also advances the game of basketball as the research and development arm of the NBA.  Throughout the season fans can watch all NBA D-League games on NBA Futurecast, the free live Web-streaming initiative found at nba.com/futurecast.

 

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