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George Braithwaite

Ping pong legend George Braithwaite to be honored in NYC ceremony 10/23

New Outdoor Ping Pong Tables on Roosevelt Island…Official Dedication of the GEORGE BRAITHWAITE TABLE TENNIS COURTHONORING THE LIFE OF TABLE TENNIS LEGEND/ROOSEVELT ISLAND RESIDENT“THE CHIEF” GEORGE BRAITHWAITE Saturday, October 23, 2021, 10 am-4 pm***Ceremony starts 11:30 am***Roosevelt Island’s Capobianco Field Free Instruction and All-Day Play on Five Outdoor Tables
New York City, October 14, 2021– The extraordinary life and legacy of one of the legends of the sport of table tennis, “The Chief” George Braithwaite, will be honored at a ceremony on October 23 on Roosevelt Island, where he was a longtime resident. Braithwaite, born in Guyana (1934-2020), racked up an extraordinary career in his sport. An original member of Nixon’s “Ping Pong Diplomacy” team (1971), he also received USATT Hall of Fame and Lifetime Achievement Awards was a member of the US National Team in 70+ international championships, and received the Sportsman of the Year Award from the US Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC). The sport of table tennis is currently experiencing a resurgence with PingPod opening multiple locations throughout New York City, the ongoing popularity of Spin ping pong clubs, and outdoor tables — like those in Manhattan’s Bryant Park — filled 24/7 with a passionate cohort of players. The October 23 ceremony will serve as the official dedication of three permanent stone ping pong tables in Capobianco Field as well as the announcement of The George Braithwaite Community Service Award and Scholarship for high school seniors (more info below). The day’s free events include a short program of memories, music, dance, poetry, and refreshments as well as complimentary play on three permanent stone ping pong tables and two Butterfly tables donated for the day by PingPod. In addition, free instruction will be available, courtesy of PingPod’s professional coaches. The event organizer Thomas Hu, head of the American Youth Table Tennis Organization (AYTTO), which provides a pathway for young students to learn competitive table tennis and sponsors The George Braithwaite Community Service Award, says, “The Chief gave everything he had, using the sport of table tennis to foster peace, diversity, and equity. We need to keep his torch burning to continue the work he started.” PR Contact: Carol Klenfner, carol@klenfner.com, 917-860-0211
What: Official Dedication of The George Braithwaite Table Tennis Court and Service Award When: Saturday, October 23, 2021, 10 am-4 pm*Ceremony starts 11:30 am Where: George Braithwaite Table Tennis Court, Capobianco Field, Roosevelt Island, New York CityAdmission Free/RSVP Required (by New York State)HERESponsors: Joola, NYTTF, PingPod, Spin
# # #About AYTTO: American Youth Table Tennis Organization is a 501c3 not for profit dedicated to teaching table tennis, teamwork, and table tennis-related STEM to school-aged students. AYTTO started expert table tennis programs in NYC public middle schools in 2003, adding high schools in 2008 and elementary schools in 2017. The organization played an instrumental role in making New York the only U.S. city where table tennis is recognized as an official varsity sport (2014). Over the last five years close to 10,000 student-athletes in various states from the Northeast of the U.S. have participated in AYTTO programs and tournaments. More information on AYTTO can be found at www.aytto.org, or by contacting Thomas Hu, thomas.hu@aytto.org About The George Braithwaite Community Service Award:A $5000 scholarship awarded to high school seniors over 18 on track to apply for or are enrolled in an accredited college, university, or technical trade school, who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to the AYTTO program, including helping students improve their table tennis skills and sportsmanship, or strengthening, improving, or growing the AYTTO program. The scholarship winner must exhibit outstanding volunteerism in promoting, organizing, and helping others to be better in the sport of table tennis. The scholarship winner is expected to participate in the NCTTA competition at their enrolled school (or to organize a table tennis team and program at his/her school if it does not yet participate in the NCTTA program). Priority will be given to individuals who have actively supported the development of a diverse table tennis community, including participation by females and underprivileged youth. All applicants must be U.S. residents and nominated by the AYTTO board, NCTTA board or coaches, teachers, and parents of youth participating in the AYTTO program.

Celebrating the 50th biennial anniversary of Ping Pong Diplomacy, the ITTF Foundation is proud to be a part of the official dedication of the “The Chief” George Braithwaite Table Tennis Court. Taking place on Oct. 23 in New York, USA, the event honors the life of George Braithwaite, an original member of Nixon’s “Ping Pong Diplomacy” team in 1971.

Born in Guyana, Braithwaite racked up an extraordinary career in table tennis. In addition to his role in the Ping Pong Diplomacy, he also received USATT Hall of Fame and Lifetime Achievement Awards was a member of the US National Team in 70+ international championships and received the Sportsman of the Year Award from the US Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).

The October 23rd ceremony will serve as the official dedication of three permanent stone table tennis tables in Capobianco Field, Roosevelt Island as well as the announcement of The George Braithwaite Community Service Award and Scholarship for high school seniors. The day’s free events include a short program of memories, music, dance, poetry, and refreshments as well as complimentary play on three tables. In addition, participants will also receive free instructions for those wish to improve their table tennis skill.

Braithwaite gave everything he had, using the sport of table tennis to foster peace, diversity and equity. We need to keep his torch lighted to continue the work he started. – Thomas Hu, event organizer, head of the American Youth Table Tennis Organization (AYTTO).  

Stay tuned for our follow up report on the event!

 

About AYTTO:  American Youth Table Tennis Organization is a 501c3 not-for-profit dedicated to teaching table tennis, teamwork, and table tennis-related STEM to school-aged students. The organization provides a pathway for young students to learn competitive table tennis and sponsors The George Braithwaite Community Service Award.

About The George Braithwaite Community Service Award: A $5,000 scholarship awarded to high school seniors over 18 on track to apply for or are enrolled in an accredited college, university, or technical trade school, who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to the AYTTO program, including helping students improve their table tennis skills and sportsmanship, or strengthening, improving, or growing the AYTTO program. Applicants must be U.S. residents and nominated by the AYTTO board, NCTTA board or coaches, teachers and parents of youth participating in the AYTTO program.