Michigan Kids Win Chance to Learn Healthy Habits From Their Ford Field Heroes

Meghan O'Brien

| 3 min read

DETROIT, Aug. 6, 2015— Sixty kids from metro Detroit and Lansing youth organizations, ages six to 12, will join Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Detroit Lions’ mascot Roary and members of the Lions youth programming staff for on-field activities and a player meet-and-greet Thursday, Aug. 13. Ten of the participating children won their spot on the field by practicing healthy habits in Blue Cross’ #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion Challenge. More than 300 Michigan kids registered for the contest, which called on kids to pledge to complete four, weekly health challenges throughout July. The kids spent the month, with the support of their parents and guardians, learning how to play, eat, throw and sleep like their favorite Detroit Lions players, including daily throwing challenges and getting active for at least 60 minutes a day. The winners of the #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion Challenge are
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“Blue Cross wants to thank the hundreds of Michigan families who took the Play like a Lion Challenge," said Andy Hetzel, vice president of corporate communications for Blue Cross. "We had 10 contest winners, but every family that took the pledge is a winner by engaging their kids in eating healthy foods, getting out to play every day and getting enough sleep at night. Those families are setting their kids up for a healthier future. Blue Cross’ partnership with the Detroit Lions on the challenge and their ‘Play 60’ program supports our mutual commitment to helping every Michigan kid grow up healthy.” Wade Martin, vice president, Corporate Partnerships for the Detroit Lions said, “The Detroit Lions were proud to partner with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for the #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion Challenge, which encouraged families and youth to establish the same healthy habits our Play 60 program emphasizes year round. We’re excited to host the winners at Ford Field on August 13 for an unforgettable experience.” The #MIKidsCan Train like a Lion Challenge winners and youth participants from Detroit PAL, the Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Michigan and Eagles Sports in Lansing participating in the VIP experience will kick off the event prior to the start of the preseason game with 60 minutes of on-field physical activity, led by Roary and Detroit Lions Director of Youth Programming Chris Fritzsching. The kids also will receive backpacks, #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion shirts and a healthy dinner prior to cheering on the Lions as they take on the New York Jets. #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion supports Blue Cross’s ongoing commitment to children’s health and its #MIKidsCan campaign – an initiative focused on encouraging kids to adopt healthy habits early in life that are more likely to be carried into adulthood. Over the last 10 years, Blue Cross has given more than $6 million in support of kids’ health and wellness initiatives across the state, reaching more than 100,000 children. For more information on the #MIKidsCan Play like a Lion Challenge and Blue Cross’s ongoing efforts to help improve childhood health, visit or follow #MIKidsCan on Twitter. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit mutual insurance company, is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. BCBSM provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.4 million members residing in Michigan in addition to employees of Michigan-headquartered companies who reside outside the state. For more company information, visit and
MI Blues Perspectives is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association