Under 12 boys team wins the opportunity to work out with Toronto FC stars

TORONTO, Aug. 31 /CNW/ - Toronto FC and the MLSE Team Up Foundation, in partnership with Kia Canada Inc. and Toronto's Parks, Forestry and Recreation department, teamed up to unveil two newly refurbished soccer pitches at G. Ross Lord Park on Tuesday. The refurbishment, funded by the MLSE Team Up Foundation, Kia Canada Inc. and Toronto's Parks, Forestry and Recreation department, represents the sixth sports facility this year to benefit from Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment's (MLSE) and the MLSE Team Up Foundation's hockey rink, basketball court and soccer pitch legacy program.

Toronto FC's Stefan Frei, Chad Barrett and their teammates led youth from a local camp and a U12 boys team from Burlington through a series of drills during the hour-long event. The team from Burlington had previously won the chance to play with Toronto FC through a contest run by Kia Canada Inc..

"We're thrilled to make a difference for the kids and families that will use this pitch and contribute to the growth of the beautiful game," said Tom Anselmi, MLSE executive vice-president and COO. "The aspiring De Rosarios and de Guzmans of tomorrow need places to play and learn. Through our legacy program we're trying to ensure that communities like this one have those facilities."

De Rosario, de Guzman and Anselmi were joined by Mayor David Miller, Maria Soklis, Vice President and COO, Kia Canada Inc., Toronto City Councillor Mike Feldman and General Manager of Parks, Forestry and Recreation Brenda Patterson.

"Kia Canada's commitment is to Drive Change by helping to improve communities in Canada" said Maria Soklis, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Kia Canada Inc. "We are both proud and excited to assist with the refurbishment at G. Ross Lord Park for the players, friends, neighbours and family that will enjoy this soccer pitch into the future."

The MLSE Team Up Foundation with the support of Toronto FC's Corporate Partner KIA invested more than $60,000 in significant upgrades and improvements to G. Ross Lord Park, including the installation of new turf to key portions of the pitches, new player benches with awnings, repairs to the bleachers and a maintenance plan.

"I'm incredibly proud of the terrific partnership we have developed with Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment because it has allowed us to rebuild and refurbish numerous recreational facilities all over Toronto," said Mayor Miller. "As a supporter and season seat holder for Toronto FC and a lover of the beautiful game in general, I'm especially pleased to see TFC and the Team Up Foundation investing in a way that will help soccer, which is the most played sport in the world, grow in this City."

The MLSE Team Up Foundation improves the lives of youth by building facilities, giving to sustainable programs and empowering youth through sports and recreation. Over the past five years MLSE, with help from their partners, has invested approximately $1.9 million in building and refurbishing 15 rinks, six courts and five pitches through its legacy program. The program aims to illustrate the importance places such as G. Ross Lord park play in shaping the lives of people in a community and creating the next generation of players and coaches.

SOURCE Kia Canada Inc.

For further information: For further information: Media Contact: Michelle Lissel, Toronto FC, (416) 815-5400 ext. 5399; Jack Sulymka, Kia Canada Inc., (905) 301-6207,; Stuart Green, Office of Mayor Miller, 416 338-7119; Jamie Deans, MLSE, (416) 815-5445

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