It takes one person to motivate thousand of people to donate.

11th Annual Katie Samson Lacrosse Festival slated for April 30
Published: Tuesday, April 26, 2011



The 11th Annual Katie Samson Lacrosse Festival will be held April 30 at Radnor High School. This year’s festival will be the biggest yet and the largest single-day high school lacrosse festival in the country with 54 varsity teams – (26 boys teams and 28 girls teams), youth teams, more than 20 vendors and 10,000 fans.

The Katie Samson Foundation hit the $1,000,000 donation mark in its 10th year, and has distributed that to charities supporting spinal cord injury research, care, and quality of life improvements. Through the years, the fest has grown in both number and stature.

The festival provides the premier high school lacrosse teams in the Mid-Atlantic and beyond with an atmosphere promoting sportsmanship, camaraderie and purpose. The festival is organized by volunteers from the Philadelphia regional lacrosse community and the Katie Samson Foundation.

The festival is inspired by Samson, a local NCAA Division III lacrosse champion, who, in January 2000, was the victim of a devastating spinal cord trauma paralyzing her from the chest down.

The festival will feature 27 premier boys’ and girls’ league-sanctioned regular season games, along with several youth team games, at Radnor High School. Games will be held on seven fields, running simultaneously from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Disabled athletes from Magee Rehab will be demonstrating wheelchair rugby and basketball games. High profile sports figures attending past festivals have included Villanova men's basketball coach Jay Wright and members of the Villanova basketball team, Brian Westbrook and Mike Mamula of the Philadelphia Eagles, Philadelphia Flyer John LeClair, and many members of the Philadelphia Wings and Barrage teams, including Jake Bergey and Kyle Sweeney. Speakers for this year's festival are to be announced.

Families from all over the mid-Atlantic region will be enjoying games, rides, boutiques, face-painters, balloon artists, great raffle prizes, food and lacrosse. This year there will be two FanZones which will have “Katie’sKiddieKorner” for younger fans, a Mechanical Bull, Rock Climbing Wall, Moonbounces and Slides, B101 music, and visits from SpongeBob, Hershey characters and the Wings’ Maddog. There will also be a giant game truck filled with the latest video games.

Food vendors include Bravo Pizza, Johnny’s Dog House, Saxby’s, Mr. Softee, Call Me Cupcakes plus Lew’s BBQ, Peace of Pizza and Big E’s funnel cakes and fries. Boutique set-ups in both Fan Zones guarantee a shopping opportunity for all, with Varsity Belts, Daphne’s Details, Bungalow, Brooklyn Bags, Maui Wowi, and more. Cascade, Competitive Edge, Great Atlantic Lax Co, Tribe 7 lax, and Lacrosse International have the latest lacrosse clothing and gear.

In support of local lacrosse legend John Christmas’ foundation LEAPS (Lacrosse Education Attitude Perseverance Success), festival attendees are being asked to clear out their basement of used lacrosse equipment, and to bring it to the festival, dropping it off at either entrance. This will provide countless opportunities for inner city kids to learn and experience the sport of lacrosse.

The Katie Samson Foundation raises money for research to identify a cure for spinal cord injuries and to optimize care and quality of life for spinal cord patients. The foundation also promotes social awareness as the lacrosse community comes together to support the festival. Through Katie’s prodigious courage and perseverance, her foundation has successfully raised funds to support spinal cord injury research, patient care, and quality of life improvements.


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