Posts tagged with "play"

Rita Azar Illustrates a Video Games Article for 360 MAGAZINE

Colin Kaepernick x Madden 21

by Justin Lyons

Colin Kaepernick is officially back in Madden.

For the first time since 2017, football fans and Colin Kaepernick fans will have the chance to use the ex-49ers quarterback in the signature football game from EA SPORTS.

The announcement came from EA SPORTS themselves, saying, “Colin Kaepernick is one of the top free agents in football and a starting-caliber quarterback. The team at EA SPORTS, along with millions of Madden NFL fans, want to see him back in our game.”

Though Kaepernick is not signed to a team in real life or in Madden, he is available to sign to any team in Franchise mode. He’s also available in Play Now mode.

His jersey is also available in The Yard, a mode new to Madden this year that allows users to express themselves creatively. His signature celebration, which is available upon scoring with Kaepernick, depicts the quarterback raising his fist in the air to signify Black Power.

Kaepernick has been rated 81 overall, which is good for the 15th best quarterback in the league, tied with Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

According to EA SPORTS, that number was determined using data-driven simulations. They did take into account the fact that Kaepernick has not played since 2016, but his mobility and big play ability earned him the 81 overall rating.

EA SPORTS also said players looking to have complete control over their Franchise mode can change his rating however they see fit, including bringing him up to 99 overall. Adjusting his stats to 99 overall would make his only company the likes of Aaron Donald, Christian McCaffrey, Michael Thomas, Stephon Gilmore and the only 99 rated quarterback in the game, Patrick Mahomes.

Kaepernick was among the first in professional sports to kneel during the American National Anthem in protest of police brutality. Kaepernick opted out of his contract after the 2016 season, and not one of the 32 NFL teams has made a move to acquire him.

Largely suspected of being a victim of blackballing, Kaepernick has since worked as an activist in the community, especially with children. He has led rights campaigns and camps and was the face of a Nike campaign in 2018 that carried the slogan “Believe in something. Even if means sacrificing everything.”

Roger Goodell encouraged teams to sign Kaepernick in a conversation on ESPN in June, just weeks after George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis.

The killing of George Floyd seemed to awaken large corporations throughout the United States, leading many to make statements, including the NFL.

Though criticized for not speaking out sooner, the NFL and Commissioner Goodell released a statement via Twitter on June 5 saying, “We, the NFL, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of Black People. We, the NFL, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the NFL, believe Black Lives Matter.”

NFL teams cancelled practices and scrimmages in the past month after the shooting of Jacob Blake by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Action taken after these events could remove the stigma NFL owners appeared to have when it came to signing Kaepernick, and fans who believe in his message and talent would love to see him on the field again soon.

Escape from Iron Gate Board Game

Bring your beloved Escape Room home with The Escape Game: Escape from Iron Gate board game!

By Katrina Tiktinsky

Tired of being stuck at home? Running out of new activities to do with that old stack of cards? There’s no denying we all need a taste of freedom in the middle of this pandemic. Escape rooms are shut down, but your good time shouldn’t have to be! You can now delight in your favorite brain puzzle from the comfort of your home, without sacrificing any of the fun!

Meet The Escape Game: Escape from Iron Gate.

Designed by The Escape Game company and translated into a mass retail opportunity by Goliath’s brilliant publishing team, the new stay-at-home activity will hit shelves this August and instantly revitalize your summer!

Imagine: Trapped behind bars for a crime you didn’t commit, having pleaded your case unsuccessfully to everyone from the judge to the warden, your most logical option is also the most daring… a prison break! Only one inmate from your group will make it to freedom. Which of your friends will prove the most brutal enemy? How clever and cut-throat will you play it to make your escape?

The prison break party game is broken down into four areas of a board. Moving between them, players will offer Gate Card items to the Commissary, treasures collected by completing puzzles, drawing, acting, and trading. Be the first one to pass through the Final Gate, and you’ve got your sweet sweet freedom! You’ll be so thrilled you’ll forget you’re on your couch!

This is no typical boredom fix; you’ll never get tired of playing The Escape Game! Variety in gameplay means you’ve got endless ways to play, and no two nights will feel the same. Designed for 3-8 players, ages 13 and up, this is the perfect activity for a group game night. Round up your family and (socially distanced) friends to play away the quarantine blues.

Watch the Escape from Iron Gate tutorial HERE.

Kicking a Soccer Ball illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

U.S. Soccer Foundation – 300 Mini-Pitches

300 Mini-Pitches from the U.S. Soccer Foundation Bring Soccer to Underserved Communities Research shows youth sports improve physical and mental health as well as academic performance in communities hit hardest by COVID-19 July 27, 2020 U.S. Soccer Foundation As a traumatic pandemic continues to grip much of America, particularly communities of color, efforts are underway to ensure that children and families across the country have positive recreational opportunities to look forward to when they return to school and play. 

The U.S. Soccer Foundation, with the support of its partners, this week reached an important milestone with the installation of the 300th mini-pitch in underserved communities nationwide since 2015. Through a collaborative effort with local governments, youth organizations, school districts, and companies of all sizes, the U.S. Soccer Foundation has continued installing mini-pitches during the pandemic, fulfilling a long-term commitment to children living in underserved communities. 

These communities are the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and will be the slowest to recover, which underscores the importance of these investments. “The trauma that young people in underserved communities face from this pandemic, from the loss of lives to family member’s loss of jobs to the closure of schools and community centers, has been profound,” U.S. Soccer Foundation President & CEO Ed Foster-Simeon said. 

“This is an unprecedented escalation in the already challenging circumstances that young people live with, day after day.” “The U.S. Soccer Foundation and our partners are sending a very real message to young people and their families through these projects: We are here for you. We continue to ensure that when communities are ready, more mini-pitches will be there for play.” The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s mini-pitch initiative is responding to a significant challenge faced by youth in underserved communities—a critical shortage of safe places to play.

Since 2015, the Foundation has worked with partners to install mini-pitches in more than 200 communities across the United States and more mini-pitches are on the way. The Foundation plans to install more than 100 in the next year, with a goal of creating a total of 1,000 mini-pitches coast to coast by 2026. With safe surfaces and high-quality lighting, these mini-pitches serve as an ideal place for both pick-up games and free play, as well as high-quality programming, including the Foundation’s Soccer for Success program. 

Mini-pitches fit into urban environments or other areas where space is at a premium, providing a safe place for kids to play and for community members to gather right in their neighborhoods. Corporations including Target, Adidas, and Major League Soccer and its clubs are national partners in this initiative and have partnered with the Foundation on hundreds of mini-pitches to date. Last September, Musco Lighting partnered with the U.S. Soccer Foundation to update the mini-pitch with a new modular system including lights, fencing, and goals. On average, these lighted mini-pitches add 2.75 hours of playing time per day on each pitch. 

Although participation in youth sports is associated with better health and academic achievement, more than 80 percent of children living in households making less than $25,000 miss out on the benefits of team sports. Furthermore, one in three Americans don’t have a park within a 10-minute walk from home, leaving too many kids without access to a soccer program or safe place for free play. To address these barriers, the Foundation and its partners have committed to increasing access to quality youth development programming and creating 1,000 new mini-pitches nationwide. In addition to providing access, the creation of mini-pitches has lasting community benefits: 98% of communities report that the people in their community are more active and feel safer with the addition of a mini-pitch. 

Further, soccer mini-pitches serve as neighborhood gathering places for families, and nearly one-third of the kids who come to play on them are new to soccer. To learn more about the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s work to make soccer everyone’s game, visit itseveryonesgame.org

The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s programs are the national model for sports-based youth development in underserved communities. Since its founding in 1994, the Foundation has established programs proven to help children embrace an active and healthy lifestyle while nurturing their personal growth beyond sports. Its cost-effective, high-impact initiatives offer safe environments where kids and communities thrive. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Soccer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Follow U.S. Soccer Foundation: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

Parenting Tips

Summer is fast approaching, and while that usually means barbecues, beach days, and family vacations, this summer promises to be very different due to the COVID-19 pandemic. States around the country are slowly beginning to open back up, but everyday life is still far from being back to normal, which means parents will need to get more creative than ever to keep their young children healthy, happy, and mentally stimulated in the days and months ahead.

As part of our ongoing series aimed at helping parents navigate these uncertain times, Children and Screens teamed up once again with some of the top experts in the fields of parenting, education, and child psychology to bring you some new tips for the summer season that will help you make the most of this critical time in your child’s development. Read on for details, and be sure to tune in to the next installment of Children and Screens “Ask The Experts” interactive webinar series this coming Wednesday, June 3rd, at noon EDT, when an esteemed panel of experts will talk about how to navigate summer with your toddler while observing social distancing and answer your questions via Zoom. Moderated by Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, PhD, Director of Temple University’s Infant Language Laboratory and Professor of Psychology.

STOP, DROP, AND PLAY

Parents are the first and most influential teachers a child will ever have, but more than that, they’re also first responders during this pandemic. Play is medicine for young children, so be sure to stop and drop what you’re doing regularly for short bouts of play. – Mary Gordon, Founder/President, Roots of Empathy

TELL ME A STORY

With some prompting and support, you can help your child develop their language and storytelling skills while spending quality time together. Take photos and videos next time your child is playing with puppets or stuffed animals, building with blocks, or drawing with chalk on the sidewalk. Later, you can review the photos or videos together and invite your child to tell a story about what was happening in the town they built with their blocks, or what they drew with the chalk, or how they used the hose to fill up the plastic pool. – Katie Paciga, Associate Professor of Education, Columbia College Chicago

FLIGHTS OF FANTASY

Most children delight in letting their imagination run wild. Give them the ‘driving seat” and belt up for a pretend adventure to the jungle, the Egyptian desert, the North Pole, or even the moon. Turn a room upside-down to create “caves” and let the fun begin! – Claire Hughes, Professor of Psychology and Deputy Director of the Centre for Family Research, University of Cambridge

GET CREATIVE

Kids get the most out of play when they can use materials like sand, water, paint, playdough, dress-ups, markers and paper, generic animals and people, and building materials like blocks. That’s because these items encourage children to tell their own stories and invite them to incorporate their own feelings, imaginations, and experiences as they play. Media-based and defined toys overly influence how children play, which edges out kids’ needs and ideas, dampens their creativity, and minimizes the benefits of high quality play. – Nancy Carlsson-Paige, Ed.D., Professor Emerita Lesley University, co-founder Defending the Early Years

MAKE THE MOST OF MEALTIME

Children who engage in more conversations at home are better at processing language, which is essential for learning. Mealtimes are an excellent opportunity to talk with your kids, so try to put all devices aside at the table and focus on conversation. You can talk about something fun you did together recently, discuss plans for a future event, ask your child questions about how they’re feeling, share interesting facts you recently learned, or see if they have any questions for you. – Meredith Rowe, Saul Zaentz Professor of Early Learning and Development, Harvard University Graduate School ofEducation

FRESH AIR & FACETIME

We all need fresh air, and kids especially need to run and jump and build those bones. If you have children who are reluctant to go outside, tell them you’re going to make a video together to send to a family member who’s far away. Ask them to tell you about what they’re doing and get them talking. Using this medium to solicit language from children accomplishes three things: it gets them outside and exercising, it invites them to narrate their activities, and it makes a far-away grandparent, aunt, or uncle very happy! When your children talk about what they’re doing, they’re improving their language development, especially when you ask them to clarify what they mean. – Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Unidel H. Rodney Sharp Professor of Education at the University of Delaware

NURTURE IN NATURE

Outdoor time is great for parents and kids alike. The evidence is clear that nature-based experiences contribute to relaxation, reduced stress, and overall health and well-being. Playing outdoors stimulates children’s creativity, self-confidence, and resilience. Time together in nature also helps make shared memories and strengthens family ties. Wherever you live, look for ways to get outside with your children in order to learn, play, explore, and adventure. From birdwatching to growing a garden, making mud pies to having a picnic, nearby nature isan endless source of healthy and healing connections. – Cheryl Charles, Ph.D., Co-Founder and CEO Emerita, Children & Nature Network

CSR2 Racing x Lamborghini

Zynga (Nasdaq:ZNGA), a leading social game developer, today announced the launch of the new Lamborghini Huracán Performante Spyder and Lamborghini Urus models in CSR Racing 2 (CSR2), the most popular Racing game on mobile. As the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus make their international auto show debuts at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show, CSR2 players will be able to interact with both vehicles in-game, giving them unparalleled, behind-the-scenes access to the world’s newest supercars.

“We are proud to partner with Lamborghini to bring the performance and cutting-edge design of the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus to mobile players around the world,” said Julian Widdows, Vice President of Games, CSR2. “Working closely with the Lamborghini design team enabled us to capture every detail of both vehicles in stunning realism, bringing them to life for car lovers who are unable to see the unveiling in-person during the Geneva Motor Show. We are excited to take the experience a step further by giving our players the chance to take the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus off the mobile screen and into their real-world driveway through a seamless integration with CSR2’s AR mode.”

Beginning today, CSR2 players will be able to experience the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus in both in-game racing and real-world AR environments.Specifically:

  • The Lamborghini Huracán Performante Spyder, which debuted for the first time ever at the 2018 Geneva Auto Show, will feature a special golden cup March 9 – 12 in-game. Players will be able to collect one of 17 different configurations, including the Geneva unveiled vehicle, and take part in a special event ladder to earn rewards and upgrades.
  • The Lamborghini Urus, having made its North American debut in Detroit in January, will be the crew championship prize, with the top 10 crews getting to own the Geneva configuration of the vehicle. Lamborghini Urus season players that participate in a crew and achieve 20 million respect points will be guaranteed another Geneva configuration of the vehicle. The luxury SUV touts a cutting-edge, distinct and streamlined design, boasting Italian craftsmanship intersecting with state-of-the-art technology, making it an ultimate garage must-have for CSR2 players.

“The commitment that CSR2 takes in providing a true-to-life drag racing and vehicle ownership experience for their players aligns with the values, pride and excellence that the Lamborghini brand embodies,” said Mitja Borkert, Chief Designer, Lamborghini. “At Lamborghini, we are dedicated to creating a lifestyle experience through luxury design and outstanding performances, and it’s been a pleasure to work with CSR2 to digitally recreate both the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus as they appear on the floor of the Geneva International Motor Show.”

Since debuting in June 2016, CSR2 has pioneered innovation in the mobile Racing category – delivering the most authentic vehicle and drag racing experience to car lovers around the world. Working closely with all manufacturers featured in-game, every vehicle in CSR2 has been meticulously recreated, with precise attention paid to every aspect of the customization experience, from paint colors and finishes to interior leather colors and trims. CSR2’s AR Mode is a next-generation car configurator experience that complements new in-game car models, allowing players to scale their vehicle to showroom specs, place and reposition their supercar in a real-world environment and share across their social channels.

Attendees of the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show can experience the Huracán Performante Spyder and Urus exclusively in CSR2’s AR mode by visiting the Lamborghini booth on the show floor March 7 – 11 for a hands-on demo.

TOWKIO x “WWW.”

TOWKIO RELEASES DEBUT ALBUM “WWW.

Chicago musician Towkio risked his life Wednesday by literally traveling to space in a helium balloon and today his debut album, WWWhas arrived along with a video showing that emotional journey to space. It’s a must watch.

The album (out on American/Republic Records) was executive produced by Rick Rubin and Lido (recorded at Shangri-La in Malibu) with features from SZA, Vic Mensa and more.

Listen to the album HERE and check the recap video from his trip to nearly 100,000 feet below.

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON TOWKIO
Chantz Brewer
Chantz.Brewer@umusic.com

Beau Benton
Beau.Benton@umusic.com

OSSIE DAVIS

Today marks the 100th birthday of author, actor, and activist, Ossie Davis. He was a champion for human rights and participated in meaningful acts throughout his lifetime with a specific focus on the transformation of lives.  Whether it was on a Broadway stage, the big screen or at a rally for civil rights, he remained engaged and committed to effect change. 

Throughout this year, we will celebrate and remember the work, words, and legacy of Ossie Davis.

Here are a few key moments from the life and legacy of

Ossie Davis

·      American film, television & Broadway actor, director, playwright, author, and civil rights activist.

·      Married legendary actress Ruby Dee in 1948. 

·      Master of Ceremony (along with his wife, Ruby Dee) for the 1963 March on Washington.

·      Noted and credited with furthering opportunities on stage and screen for subsequent generations of Black artists.

·      Eulogized Malcolm X, supported Martin Luther King, Jr. and  A. Philip Randolph, and was mentored by Paul Roberson and W.E.B. DuBois. 

·      Attended Howard University (DC) for 3 years after which he pursued a writing career and studied drama. Mr. Davis received an honorary Doctorate of Humanities from Howard University in 1973.

·      The United Negro College Fund manages the Ossie Davis Scholars Program.

·      Mr. Davis received many honors and citations, including the N.Y. Urban League Frederick Douglass Award, the NAACP Image Award, the National Medal of Arts, the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award and a Grammy. In December 2004, Mr. Davis and Ms. Dee were recipients of the Kennedy Center Honors.

 

WE SALUTE OUR NATIONAL TREASURE!

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