Nathan's Famous and KaBOOM! Celebrate Detroit Community with Ready. Set. PLAY. Program Partner with Brightmoor Alliance and Kroger Supermarkets to Host Coney Island Play Day for Community Youth

Select Youth Win Tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race at Michigan International Speedway

LISLE, Ill., Aug. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Nathan's Famous and KaBOOM! made a trip to the Motor City this week bringing with them a little piece of Coney Island. The world famous hot dog company and the national non-profit dedicated to giving kids the play they need to thrive partnered with Brightmoor Alliance to bring Ready. Set. PLAY. to the Detroit area. Nathan's and KaBOOM! have staged similar events across the country as part of the Ready. Set. PLAY. program, which was created earlier this year to celebrate play and the "playmakers" who are making play possible in communities around the country. Kroger Supermarkets also stepped in to support the event with a donation of food items to complement the Nathan's hot dogs children and guests enjoyed during the afternoon of fun.

The Brightmoor Alliance is a coalition of residents, stakeholders and organizations in Detroit dedicated to enhance the capacity and the effectiveness of Brightmoor residents and stakeholders to transform the community into a community of choice. Founded in 2000, the Alliance was established in response to conditions in the community, including poor housing, a high crime rate, and a staggering amount of vacant land. Community organizations – many of which had partnered with one another over the years – felt that the time was right to mobilize community resources and focus their combined efforts to revitalize the area. Brightmoor Alliance, which worked with KaBOOM! to build a community playground in 2011, was selected for the event because of their passion for the importance of play for youth and their commitment to promoting and protecting balanced and active play.

"We joined forces with KaBOOM! earlier this year and together, we wanted to create a way to give back to organizations and schools who are working hard to support children and their communities by promoting and protecting active play," said Mike Paribello, senior director of marketing for the John Morrell Food Group, a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods and licensing partner of Nathan's Famous. "Ready. Set. PLAY. was born and we've had a blast bringing some summer fun along with a piece of Coney Island to youth across the country. We are honored to work with and celebrate Brightmoor Alliance and are thrilled to partner with Kroger Supermarkets to host this play-filled day here in Detroit."

"The fundamentals of balanced and active lifestyles begin at home with our parents and in our communities," said KaBOOM! CEO and Founder Darell Hammond. "With support from Nathan's Famous through Ready. Set. PLAY., we are able to bring play opportunities to communities across the nation and inspire kids and families to incorporate play in their everyday lives." 

The fun-filled afternoon included the flavors of Coney Island with delicious Nathan's Famous hot dogs, carnival-like games, giveaways and much more. Leading up to the event, youth ages five to 12 were encouraged to participate in an essay contest focused on the importance of play and what play means to them. Four winners were selected at the event and as a prize, will attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, August 17 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich.

"Our children are our future and we believe a key element for a successful future is to lead an active, well-balanced lifestyle," said Riet Schumack, Brightmoor community resident and Brightmoor Alliance board member. "We are truly thankful for the efforts of organizations such as KaBOOM! and Nathan's Famous. Their work through programs such as Ready. Set. PLAY. enhance local efforts to ensure our children and our communities have safe and active lives."

For more information, please visit Nathan's Famous and KaBOOM! online.

About Nathan's
Nathan's is a Russell 2000 Company that currently distributes its products in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, the Cayman Islands and nine foreign countries through its restaurant system, foodservice sales programs and product licensing activities. At June 29, 2014, the Nathan's restaurant system consisted of 311 units, comprised of 306 franchised units and five company-owned units (including one seasonal unit). Nathan's was ranked #55 on the Forbes list of the Best Small Companies in America and was listed as the Best Small Company in New York State in October 2013. Last year, over 480 million Nathan's Famous hot dogs were sold. For additional information about Nathan's please visit our website at www.nathansfamous.com.

About John Morrell Food Group 
With over a century and a half of experience, John Morrell Food Group brands have become respected and well known for providing premium-quality meat products to families across the United States. With products ranging from lunchmeat and franks to smoked sausage, bacon and pepperoni, the John Morrell Food Group is an important part of consumers' mealtimes. The John Morrell Food Group offers several national and regional brands including Armour®, Eckrich®, John Morrell®, Curly's®, Patrick Cudahy®, Carando®, Healthy Ones®, Margherita®, Kretschmar® and LunchMakers®.

About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $14 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Farmland®, Armour®, Cook's®, Gwaltney®, John Morrell®, Kretschmar®, Curly's®, Carando®, Margherita®, and Healthy Ones®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental, and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com and www.smithfieldcommitments.com.

About KaBOOM!
KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to the bold new goal of ensuring that all children, particularly the 16 million American children living in poverty, get the balanced and active play they need to thrive. KaBOOM! has been a powerful champion for play since its founding in 1996, working with partners to build, improve and open more than 15,000 playgrounds, engage more than 1,000,000 volunteers and serve more than 6,600,000 children. KaBOOM! creates and catalyzes great places to play, inspires, empowers and leads play advocates, and educates and elevates the societal conversation about the importance of play in children's lives. For more information, visit kaboom.org/act or follow the conversation on why #playmatters at twitter.com/kaboom or facebook.com/kaboom.

About Brightmoor Alliance
The Brightmoor Alliance is a coalition of residents, stakeholders and organizations in Detroit dedicated to enhance the capacity and the effectiveness of Brightmoor residents and stakeholders to transform the community into a community of choice. Founded in 2000, the Alliance was established in response to conditions in the community, including poor housing, a high crime rate, and a staggering amount of vacant land. Community organizations – many of which had partnered with one another over the years – felt that the time was right to mobilize community resources and focus their combined efforts to revitalize the area. For more information, visit: www.brightmooralliance.org/.

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SOURCE Nathan's Famous




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