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Third Annual Mayor’s International Futsal Cup to take place at Indiana Statehouse

INDIANAPOLIS, AUG. 9, 2017 — The third annual occurrence of the Mayor’s International Futsal Cup, hosted by Indiana Futsal, will take place Saturday, Sept. 2 to Monday, Sept. 4 at the state capitol building’s parking lot, located downtown at 201 N. Capitol St.

This adult futsal tournament features over 40 teams representing 32 different countries and is one of the largest futsal tournaments in the United States. Teams play three games in a round-robin format. The top two teams from each group will move on to a single-elimination tournament.

“Seeing members of the Indianapolis community from thirty-two countries compete together is incredible. Our staff, as well as our partners and sponsors, come together each year to make this event as fun and inclusive as possible. We’re very proud of how it’s grown,” says Justin Becht, director of Indiana Futsal.

The tournament will have locally-owned food trucks with flavors representative of some of the teams’ countries. New to this year’s event will be the Sun King Lounge where attendees can enjoy a locally-crafted micro-brew while watching the action.

This event is free and open to the public. The Mayor’s International Futsal Cup is made possible in part by partnerships with Indy Eleven, Downtown Indy and the Indianapolis Mayor’s Office.

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Futsal is a version of soccer played on a hard surface with a smaller, heavier ball and teams of five-a-side. This format of play emphasizes ball control and skillful technique as players have a smaller space to utilize.

About Indiana Futsal: Indiana Futsal is organized to provide nonprofit, public, educational futsal development and competition. Through tournaments, leagues, camps, free play, and other futsal events, Indiana Futsal will grow its membership across both youth and adult age groups.

 

Press release originally written by Marissa Smith for Indiana Futsal.

 

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Indiana Futsal unveils ‘Goals for Indy’ program

Indiana Futsal is pleased to announce the new Goals for Indy program, which creates steel futsal goals for public courts in Central Indiana and is a partnership among several Indianapolis businesses. The goals are sourced, constructed, and finished here locally in Indianapolis.

“Part of our mission is to provide access to the game in underserved communities,” explains Indiana Futsal Director Justin Becht, “This program allows us to secure partnerships with local, family-owned organizations and nonprofits to help lower those costs and provide safe equipment.”

The raw materials are purchased from Warner Steel, a local and family owned metal supplier, by Indiana Futsal and put together by a welding cohort within RUCKUS.

RUCKUS Makerspace and Recycle Force, both CCIC tenants, have partnered up to create a hands on 10 week 40 hr Intro to welding program. A Certified Welding Inspector works closely with students to help support, educate and empower Recycle Force participants. The cohort focuses on elements of fabrication, team building, preparing for potential jobs and set personal goals.

Upon completion of the goals, they will be taken to Cunningham Quality Painting, a local and family owned powder coating facility, to be finished with a durable UV protected powder coat. They will be stored while a site for a new public court is chosen and then installed.

The first goals to be put together were on display inside RUCKUS Makerspace on Aug. 4, where the staff spent the evening having fun and sharing the sport of futsal with First Friday attendees.

Interested in bringing futsal to your community or sponsoring the Goals for Indy program? Contact Justin Becht at justin@indianafutsal.org or 317.975.2012.

 

Article originally written and published for Indiana Futsal.

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Street Team Intern: Weeks 7-13

My official time as an intern at the Indiana State Museum is over now. As I mentioned in my Instagram post on my last day, it was great experience! I spent the summer meeting new people in my industry and getting an inside look at what having a ‘real’ job is like.

I am very proud of the work I did at the museum, and have received praises from both of my supervisors to the point where I have been asked to continue coming to the museum as a volunteer to assist with their marketing efforts.

My favorite part of being at the museum was the sense of appreciation and welcoming I felt from the staff I interacted with. They of course are used to meeting new interns every semester, with a constant flow of us college kids coming in and out. It would have been very easy for the staff to brush me off, give me a simple ‘hello’ and otherwise ignore my existence. Instead, they happily introduced themselves, shook my hand, and continued to speak kindly with me at each passing.

Throughout the summer I generated social media content, wrote media tracking reports, pitched stories to the press, and wrote press releases. All of these things are important to my future career and practicing these PR tactics helped me grow more confident in myself and my abilities.

I’m definitely looking forward to continuing to work with the museum in the future!

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Finding Futsal, an athletic outlet for inmates at Marion Co. Jail

Over the past several years, it has become increasingly common for correctional facilities to provide sports recreation for their inmates as a potential diversion from illicit activities. A 2012 report from the Prisoners’ Education Trust, even states that becoming actively involved in a sports league during detention can foster “an alternative social network, access to positive role models, improved employability, and develop a pro-social identity.”

The practice of encouraging sports in correctional facilities can be found locally, at the Marion County Jail, which has provided a basketball court for those seeking physical activity. The jail, which is part of four-facility system that houses over 2,500 inmates, noticed a recent decline in interest in basketball from its inmates but an interesting innovation on their parts: deflating the facility basketball and kicking it around in makeshift games of soccer.

Major Tanesha Crear began reaching out to local soccer organizations and brought the idea to her supervisor. The Public Information Officer for the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Katie Carlson, connected with Indiana Futsal. As a game that requires less space than soccer and can be played indoors, futsal seemed like a natural fit.

Due to one Deputy’s thoughtfulness and a collaboration among Indianapolis community members, Indiana Futsal was able to donate two inflatable futsal goals, futsal balls, and an air pump to the Marion County Jail in June, giving inmates the athletic outlet they really needed.

Justin Becht, Director of Indiana Futsal, says that the new set-up will be especially beneficial for the younger inmates, “There’s a need for incarcerated youth to be able to play and to release some tension, we were happy to help with that. A large part of Indiana Futsal’s mission is to bring the sport to populations that really need it.” Representatives from the jail also added that while physical activity helps people while inside, it is also encouraged for inmates preparing for re-entry as a way to bond with their families once they’ve left the facility.

As a result of the community connection made between the two organizations this summer, Indiana Futsal will partner with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office for the Mayor’s International Futsal Cup later this year.

Click here to view the article as it was originally published.

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Student commencement speaker Amber Kriech discusses her path before and after graduation

Click here to read my most recently published article, where I had the opportunity to chat with IUPUI’s 2017 commencement speaker, Amber. It was an enlightening interview for me as an ambitious young professional and future graduate!

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Why “girls plus” should not be a clothing section

 

I have belonged to a separate category, according to the fashion industry, since elementary school. As young as 10 years old, I remember searching stores for the section that had clothes for girls like me. My wide blue eyes would take in all the pink and sequins and glitter that make up the girls’ clothing sections and fall sad as I checked the tags, seeing sizes that my round tummy and chubby legs wouldn’t fit into.

More often than not, finding those sizes meant I had to find a different part of the store and read signs until I found one reading “Girls Plus” or something else insanely demeaning. To this day, as a grown woman, I am forced into back corners to find the three or four racks of clothing that are made for women like me.

It’s still disheartening, but because I am a grown up I understand that larger sizes do not mean less worth as a human being, no matter how many times per day messaging like that is pushed towards me like an unappetizing meal I’m supposed to eat out of politeness. For young girls though, like the one that I was not too long ago, such realizations do not come easily.

Girls plus should not be a section.

Girls with belly rolls and full cheeks should never have to feel sad about their bodies. Girls who have attained hips a little sooner and a little bigger than their friends should not feel that they are different, should not have to look for special signs and special sizes and their clothes should not be more expensive.

We are young and naive and frightened that people who see us buying girls plus clothes see us as strange. We think that it’s strange that we have to look for special signs and special sizes and that our mothers have to pay more than other mothers do.

Girls who walk into stores looking for their back to school outfit should never sit in a dressing room crying because the biggest skirt they had wouldn’t fit their waist. Think about all these girls, looking for the girls plus, and their self-esteem. There is so much waste, so many wasted tears and frustrations and steps to separate sections.

We grow into young women who avoid mirrors and photos and don’t smile at our reflections. And it takes years to remember what it’s like to not care about the number on our tags and we’re still confused about why our clothes cost three times as much. We believe that there is an “us” and a “them” and the them is girls who have never had to worry about finding the girls plus and have never cried in dressing rooms.

Those sections told all the girls that there is a “them” versus “us”. We get used to back corners, separate sections, and feeling like there is too much to us. That our bodies are too big and that they are wrong, and that the store had to go to all this trouble of making a separate section just for us.

We are not girls plus, they are not girls plus, they are just girls. Therefore, there should be no plus section.

 

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Dear alumni, you are an inspiration

In the past few weeks, I have been fortunate enough to speak with some members of IUPUI’s class of 2016. One of those interviews formed the basis for my article Catching Up with a Recent IUPUI Grad, and was particularly inspirational for me. As you’ll know if you peruse the article all the way to the end, the graduate has met her goals and, I know from speaking with her, she is very happy about where her life is at one year after graduating college.

Why is this important? 

Graduating college feels like I’m about to be tipped unceremoniously out of wheelbarrow from the top of a cliff with a very small landing pad at the bottom and I’m expected to make it on my own after years of people guiding me.

We, as students, all have our doubts about what’s going to happen when we get that magic piece of paper that cost us years of time and thousands of dollars to obtain. My fears will likely not have truly set in until next fall, when I will be starting my senior year at IUPUI (woohoo!?!), but they do creep up on me sometimes and that dropping-from-a-cliff feeling seems very real.

Graduating high school was not nearly as unnerving; I had a path laid out before me, in the form of a college acceptance letter and some scholarships, so it was not difficult to figure where to go and what to do. Also, I’ve always been pretty good at and enjoyed school, so I was not very concerned about the academic aspect of it. The post-graduation path for me this time is little more than a thin line, and though I’ve never been drunk, I feel that it’d be very easy to misstep and lose my balance.File_000

Which is why, as a future graduate, it means a lot to me to speak with alumni from my university, and I’m so grateful that I had the chance to do so and to put the happiness of said students into words to be published, so that other students may feel the same temporary relief as I have upon reading Grace Perkowitz’s words. So keep being brave and adulting, alumni, and please don’t be shy about sharing your stories with current students (even the bad parts!). We all could use a little bit of reassurance, so if you’ve got the time, go ahead and let us know what you’ve been through, because we’re all just shaking in our young adult boots.

 

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Let’s have lunch

A note on healthy eating, mainly for myself.

Deviating from the normal today, I’d like to talk a bit about food. More specifically, my difficulty in making healthy choices regarding what I consume. At the beginning of this year, I had stopped drinking soda and was eating more healthily than I probably have, ever. After three or so months of eating better and exercising regularly, my motivation stalled. A pattern has thus developed wherein I make poor choices about what I put in my body, feel disappointed or angry with myself, and continue to make poor choices in these times of particularly low moods. During good times, I am also ‘treating myself’ way too much.

This struggle, which has re-emerged many times in my twenty year lifespan, is born out of a lack of self-discipline as well as lack of funds. It’s much easier, as we all know, to grab something at a drive thru than to be considerate about what we’re eating and to prepare meals ahead of time for occasions when you’re too tired to cook.

My point is, ultimately, that I need to get back to the mindset I had six months ago. The breakthrough at that time, which is something I let slip from my mind and need to grasp again, is that sugar is an addiction. Every time your brain says, “[Insert food, in my case, a McDonald’s Coke] is good and I think you deserve some!” It’s a lie. You don’t actually need or want the sugary item because it’s just so yummy. You want it because sugar is an addictive substance and your body, when it has sugar in system, is always going to want more unless you learn to tell your cravings to shut up.

The best way, obviously, to avoid this is to cut out sugar and artificial sweeteners altogether. It’s very overwhelming to consider going cold turkey once you realize all the things that have sugar in them. I made a chef salad for lunch today, which is not the healthiest option but better than what I often eat when I’m home alone, and the ranch dressing I used has sugar in it. Loads of every day foods that we don’t consider sugary have the substance in them! For me, it’s not realistic to cut sugar out entirely, but I do have to set boundaries, which starts with remembering that consuming sugary food items is not a reward, but enabling an addiction.

 

via Daily Prompt: Savor

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Street Team Intern: Weeks 5-6

I am now over a month into my internship with the Indiana State Museum, and every day that I am here I find new ways to appreciate the museum and further confidence in having chose public relations as part of my career path.

Though I have come across some challenges, particularly trying to rack my brain to generate social media content, I look forward to most of the tasks I’m given. I’ve probably now roamed the museums exhibitions ten times all the way through, either as a nice stroll on my lunch break or searching for some new angle to take a nice photo. It’s truly a unique experience to have the privilege to do so.

People continuously ask me how it’s going, and they never seem satisfied with my solid “good” reply. Everyone wants details, but at the end of a 9-5 day it’s honestly hard for me to go back and pick out details quickly. I always need a moment to decompress, because a lot goes on, but not all of it is as interesting to others as it is to me.

As for the social media content I mentioned before, several posts I have drafted have now been published online on all three main platforms for the museum: Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. I’m very pleased with the work I’ve been able to do and the feedback I’ve been given so far.

This weekend I will be attending my first actual Street Team event by going with my coworkers to the Fishers Freedom Festival. Though I know absolutely nothing about what the festival entails or what is to be expected of a museum running a booth there, I’m doing my best to look forward to it and be confident rather than nervous. I’ll let you know how it goes!

Update: Though spending the majority of my Saturday sitting at a table in Fishers, IN was never at the top of the list for cool weekend plans, it went considerably well. It was interesting to observe the people of Fishers at an annual event for the community, and the food I had on break (a gyro) was delicious. The weather was pleasantly cool and breezy, which posed a problem for some vendors with large signs that wanted to blow over, but we had no such issues. It had been a while since I’d really had to use my sales pitch voice, and I think I did well! I am glad, however, that I will not be spending another Saturday away from home.

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Media Pitch: Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites

Good morning,

With the first day of summer just around the corner, we’re encouraging families to consider 12 great day trips to any of the state historic sites. With locations all over the state, it’s a great way for Hoosiers to have some fun and learn the history of sites  which have shaped their community.

We would love for you to encourage your audience to take a trip! More information about the state historic sites can be found at the attached press release and at indianamuseum.org

Thank you,

Marissa Smith
Street Team Intern
Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites