This afternoon at 5 p.m. at Gainesville High School members of the Gainesville football team will play a 7-on-7 flag football game against the Gainesville Police Department to help raise awareness to stop the violence.

It will also serve as an opportunity to build strong community relationships.

“The event was an innovative initiative by one of our new officers in training, Kelvin Mattair,” said Sgt. Marquitta Brown. “It is a direct complement of GPD’s Neighborhood Policing Initiative that was started in March 2020.”

Brown said many officers serve this community on their off-duty time whether it’s in church, coaching sports, volunteering at various places, helping children, and more.

And this event allows the GPD to come together to do more.

“It is our duty as community members and as an officer to keep the peace and provide safety,” Sgt. Brown said. “We understand that it takes a village to train up the next generation.”

Sergeant Brown is hoping this will be the first of many games to come. So far, they have had a lot of people reach out wanting to participate.

“Our hope is to start a positive dialogue and to take action to make this community better,” Sgt. Brown said. “We want to empower and mentor our youth. It is also important to share compassion for those we have lost to violence and to take the time and effort to make our community safe.”

The event is free and open to the public. It will take place at the Gainesville High School football field.

Sports Director for Mainstreet Daily News

Mike Ridaught is sports director for Mainstreet Daily News. Mike hosts a weekly high school sports show at Sonic Drive-In and does play-by-play for a Game-of-the Week on 106.9 FM “I am Country.”

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