David Harris (Courtesy: NJ.com)
Middleweight boxer Peter Quillin
GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - Some big name sports celebrities are in town this week for an event hoping to raise support and money for Grand Rapids Public Schools.
Organizer Jonathan Jelks describes the "The Friends of GRPS" benefit as a grassroots effort to connect community with the schools and focus on the success stories coming out of the district.
"We want to galvanize alumni in the community at large to get involved in their neighborhood schools," says Jelks. "We want them to constructively get involved with the different volunteering opportunities, and it is always awesome to have some people who have some celebrity and some status to come and champion causes like this."
New York Jets linebacker David Harris, WBO Boxing Middleweight champion Peter "Kid Chocolate" Quillin, and others will be recognized during the event.
The Friends of GRPS benefit is Thursday, June 27, at the Richard App Gallery, located at 910 Cherry SE in Grand Rapids. It is being held between 6:30 and 8:00 p.m.
The event is free, but the group will be taking donations as part of a fundraising effort. Proceeds will go towards two district programs -- "East Hills Loves Congress Elementary," which is a neighborhood-sponsored program to support parent engagement, create student gardens, tutoring, and other efforts; and the "Grand Rapids Initiative for Leaders" (GRIL), which is a mentoring program designed to cultivate student leadership.