Two Hampton Roads-based organizations, Greg Garrett Realty and the Ping Pong Gives charity foundation, teamed up to donate a ping pong table to the residents of Brookdale Williamsburg senior living community at an event last Thursday.
Members of the Ping Pong Gives board of directors were on hand to demonstrate table tennis techniques to the retirement home residents.
Ken Lees, the charity’s founder, says he started the organization in 2009 after seeing the potential that table tennis has as a low-stress activity that encourages mental, physical and social engagement.
“We use the sport of table tennis as the means to improve mental health and brain activity,” said Lees. “It’ll have a change instantly in what we’ve seen already and in our experiences over the last 10 years. Moods will change for the better, new relationships will be formed.”
Dean Johnson is a member of the group’s board of directors, and has been playing table tennis competitively for the last 60 years. At 86 years old, Johnson recently competed in the finals of a doubles table tennis tournament in Las Vegas, and says it’s never too late to learn.
“The good thing about ping pong is that when we go to a group like this, 80 percent of the people that we talk to have played it before,” said Johnson. “The good news is that it’s like riding a bicycle, you never forget how to do it.”
Micah Hunt, Greg Garrett Realty’s director of senior support, says the company decided to donate the ping pong table to the retirement community as a way to thank its senior clients who sell their homes through the agency.
“We felt that the communities work with us and have been helping us, so we wanted to give back to them and help them with something that the residents can actually utilize,” said Hunt.
International law firm McGuireWoods LLP has been announced as the newest sponsor for the Jamestown 2019 Commemoration, contributing $150,000 to the event’s international marketing efforts.
According to a news release, the 2019 Commemoration will highlight events since 1619 that “set Virginia and America on a course towards the ideals of democracy, diversity and opportunity.”
McGuireWoods LLP, which operates 22 offices in the United States, Europe and Central Asia, is headquartered in Richmond. The $150,000 donated by the firm will go towards supporting internationally-focused communications events and initiatives that build awareness for the program.
Kathy Spangler, executive director of the 2019 Commemoration, says the funds donated by McGuireWoods will go a long way toward promoting these events to a wide audience.
"2019 is an important year for the Commonwealth as it amplifies Virginia's role in the founding of America and seeks to share untold stories that have shaped our democracy,” said Spangler. “Support from McGuireWoods will help us continue this mission."
George Keith Martin, managing partner of McGuireWoods’ Richmond office, says the company is excited to expand the scope of the 2019 Commemoration’s marketing campaign.
"We are proud to partner with the 2019 Commemoration, American Evolution to highlight these important milestones that shaped the history of our nation with international audiences," said Martin. "American Evolution's events provide a great opportunity to share our country's rich heritage with visitors from around the world."
McGuireWoods joins a list of program sponsors which includes Dominion Energy, Altria Group and TowneBank.
Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.