Knicks Celebrate “Dream Week”
On Wednesday, August 15th, the New York Knicks teamed up with Garden of Dreams to continue the celebration of Dream Week by inviting forty children from Garden of Dreams for an all access tour of the MSG Training Center. The children were promised that there would be many surprises throughout the day, but were completely shocked when Head Coach Mike Woodson, Assistant Coach Darrell Walker and trainers Roger Hinds and Andy Barr walked out to greet the children. Next, 7th avenue squad member Darnell got the kids excited and told them to start putting their hands together for their next surprise, which was Steve Novak who ran out with excitement giving the kids high fives. Mike Woodson greeted and welcomed the children who he considered to now be a part of the Knicks Family into their practice facility and to enjoy the tour and activities that the Knicks and Garden of Dreams had planned for that day. To capture this special moment, the entire group took a photo on center court. Next, the children then toured the players’ lounge, weight room, training room and locker room with Roger Hines, Andy Barr and Steve Novak who were able to touch on certain exercises and routines the players do to stay healthy. During the locker room visit, each child was surprised with their very own personalized Knicks jersey.
Once the tour was completed, there was yet another surprise by Knicks City Dancers (KCD) who gave a special performance; some of the children couldn’t help but to dance along. Next, the children were allowed to let their imagine run wild where they had the opportunity to train like a professional basketball player in a mini combine workout that illustrated strength & agility, core workouts, vertical jumps and footwork. As well as explore various activities such as caricatures, face painters, magician and a photo booth where the children were able to dress up, take a picture with the KCD and were able to take the photo home from the event.
On Friday, after a week full of amazing activities and events, the children were rewarded with medals and plaques, but by four very special gold medalists. New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist who earned his gold medal at the 2006 Olympics for Sweden, Knicks Alum, Ray Lumpp where he received his gold medal at the London Olympics in 1948 and Allan Houston who was a gold medalist at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. But the children let out their loudest screams and shrieks of the week when Carmelo’s name was announced and saw him walk out to greet them. Carmelo sported his two Olympic gold medals around his neck, one from the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the most recent Olympics games in London. While receiving their medals, each child had the chance to shake hands with the Olympians, while some giving huge hugs to Carmelo in disbelief. It wasn’t over just yet; each child received an autograph basketball signed by the Knicks Olympians as well as a hockey stick signed by Henrik Lundqvist. This really put the icing on the cake for the children. With the incredible experiences along with the laughs, smiles and hugs shared throughout the week, “Dream Week” has definitely lived up to its name.