The PCA Blog - New England

Jumping for Joy at our 2nd annual Harvard STADIUM STAMPEDE: Olympian, Professional Athlete, and All of Us

by Beth O'Neill Maloney


After ten days of sweltering 90-degree temperatures, the heat dissipated and a light breeze cooled Harvard Stadium just in time for PCA’s 2nd Annual Harvard STADIUM STAMPEDE on Wednesday, July 11th. It was the perfect summer evening for all of us to chase Olympian Gevvie Stone, professional lacrosse players from the Boston Cannons, and the speedsters from Gentle Giant and Fidelity up, down and throughout Harvard Stadium to experience sports done right and support of PCA.

You can watch the recap video from the event below:

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Energized by the weather, the music, or youth, the Newton North High School Tigers literally jumped for joy before taking on the stadium. Less than an hour later, after climbing up the 1,147 steps in the stadium’s 37 sections, the Tigers reached the PCA banner spelling out one of the most beloved benefits of sports--JOY. And the Tigers smiled.

The Tigers were one of more than 33 teams to storm the stadium with PCA this year. There were youth sports organization teams from Red Zone Football and Vermont Elite, high school teams from Middlesex and BB&N, college teams from Brown, Northeastern, Middlebury, St. Lawrence, and Bryant, fitness club teams from Bosse Performance and BSC-Team Fendy, corporate teams from all over town, including Deloitte, Fidelity, Gentle Giant, Sports Innovation Lab, WBZ-TV/CBS Boston, and more. Plus professional athletes and at least one Olympian joined teams from the Boston Cannons, Scullers, Scrambled Legs, LivingProof Wellness, Friends of PCA and more!


After a welcome from PCA and the event’s U23 organizers, Katie Nugent, Amanda Haik, and Grace Woroch, and an on-field warm-up with trainers from SplitFit, the group took to the stairs with pump-up music from DJ Gambito and inspiring images scrolling across Harvard’s video board. The NE Revs street team and their mascot Slyde kept it lively on the field and the Boston Cannons Dance Team cheered everyone on.

At the top of the stairs throughout the stadium, hung a dozen PCA banners reminding participants of the character built though sports including Teamwork, Perseverance, Resilience, Confidence, Discipline, Grit, and, finally, Joy. Fueled by delicious bars donated by RXBAR, plus water, sports drinks, and bananas donated by Wegman’s, everyone stormed the stadium completing 1, 2, 10, or all 37 sections.

Prizes and free stuff were the next order of business as people gathered for an after-party of burritos from Amigos Locos food truck and Sam Adams beverages (for the 21+ in the crowd). Door prizes included gift certificates from Marathon Sports, a signed copy of Julie Foudy’s book Choose to Matter, and fresh kicks from New Balance (won by a VT Elite basketball player who had traveled 4 hours to be there with his team and his PCA National Double-Goal Coach, Sam Jackson—thank you Sam)! A few lucky participants went home with very special auction items, including a jersey signed by Gronk, two jerseys signed by Kristine Lilly, and a WHOOP.

With some 200 people sweating for good and supporting sports done right together, we raised more than $15,000 for PCA, including a $1,000 match from PCA’s nonprofit ally, Positive Tracks. And, you can add to the total if you use SplitFit’s special PCA discount code PCA3055 and sign up for a $15 session with a trainer, SplitFit will donate $15 to PCA! The proceeds from the 2nd Annual Harvard STADIUM STAMPEDE will help PCA-New England get and keep kids in sports to help them build the kind of character it takes to meet a challenge like those stadium steps.

We went home with well-worked muscles and a renewed appreciation of how sports, and sweating side-by-side, brings people together and develops character.

VOTING RESULTS: PCA asked everyone who registered to vote on the #1 character quality they had developed through sports. The winning answer? TEAMWORK, followed closely by PERSEVERANCE, RESILIENCE, CONFIDENCE, and GRIT!


U23 Captains
Katie Nugent, Amanda Haik, and Grace Woroch

Board Member Event Chair
Mark Kristiansen

The Committee +
Chris Fay, Alyssa Nugent, Petra Nugent, Claire O’Neil, Jeff Park, Eduardo Pujol


Especially Imry Halevi, Duane Reeves, and Bob Scalise

Positive Tracks
Rachel Wood, Liz Gray and Nini Meyer

New Balance
Miranda Fell, Sofia Bulman, and Matt LeBretton

AMI Graphics
Stacey MacKinnon

DJ Gambito
aka Mack Ascanio


Gronk Fitness
Gordie Gronkowski

Marathon Sports


Don’t miss the special 15 for 15 code: PCA3055
With it you can work out with a trainer for $15 AND SplitFit will donate $15 to PCA

(that’s a HUGE win/win!)

Sam Adams
Cynthia Fisher & Jim Koch

Sweat Cosmetics
Leslie Osborne

David Wade


Alex Pioggia

To join the planning team for 2019, click below and we will send you a FREE New Balance t-shirt, or two!

Click Here

See all our event photos

View Album

We hope to see you again next year!

Beth O’Neill Maloney became the Executive Director – New England in January 2016. A native of the Boston area, she is excited to help PCA accomplish its mission of providing youth and high school athletes with a positive, character-building sports experience, developing Better Athletes, Better People, throughout New England.

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