Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan and Super Bowl Champion
Ed McCaffrey reunite to coach individuals with Down syndrome

Global Down Syndrome Foundation hosts first Dare to Play Football and Dare to Cheer Camps in Washington, D.C. area

Annapolis, MD – The Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland will host the Ed McCaffrey Dare to Play Football Camp and Cheer Camp for the Global Down Syndrome Foundation on June 1 and 2. Both the football and cheer camps are open to males and females with Down syndrome ages 8 and up. This will be the first Dare to Play camp in the Washington, D.C. area.

The Global Down Syndrome Foundation has held these successful camps in Denver for the past three years and is excited to bring Dare to Play to Annapolis. The Foundation is an integral part of helping ensure maximum safety and fun for the campers.

A highlight of the camp will be the scrimmage at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 2. The two teams will be coached by Washington Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan, who will reunite with fellow former Denver Bronco Ed McCaffrey and other celebrity guest coaches. The community is invited to attend this free event to watch the game and stay for the celebration party immediately after.

No game experience is complete without cheerleaders, and to ensure the football players are properly encouraged, the Global Down Syndrome Foundation and members of the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders will host the Dare to Cheer Camp for individuals with Down syndrome in conjunction with the Dare to Play Football Camp. Male and female campers aged 8 and up will learn drills and steps to perform with members of the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders at the halftime show of the scrimmage on Saturday, June 2.

“We are so pleased and grateful to be able to work with Ed on this camp,” said Michelle Sie Whitten, executive director of Global Down Syndrome Foundation. “By providing a safe and accepting environment for individuals with Down syndrome, we hope to attract football players and cheerleaders who essentially had never dared to play before.”

Funding for the camp will be provided by the Global Down Syndrome Foundation, an organization former pro-bowler and three-time Super Bowl champion wide-receiver Ed McCaffrey has supported for many years.

“I am deeply committed to the work of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation,” McCaffrey said. “I want to make a positive difference not only for individuals with Down syndrome, but also for the typical student football players who may not know the value of having a friend who is differently-abled. Diversity and giving kids a chance to reach their potential is what these camps are all about.”

Each participant will be paired with a student football player and receive one-on-one instruction in core football skills. Student players and coaches are expected to participate in the two-day intensive camp and the entire community is encouraged to come watch the scrimmage. Individuals with Down syndrome who would like to register for either the football or cheer camp can go to

2012 Ed McCaffrey Dare to Play Football Camp and Cheerleading Camp
for Individuals with Down Syndrome 

Friday, June 1 from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Training Camp

Saturday, June 2 from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Practice and 10:30 a.m. Scrimmage)

12:00 p.m. – Free Celebration Party for Camp Participants and Fans

Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium

550 Taylor Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21401


About Ed McCaffrey
Ed McCaffrey established himself as one of the game’s most victorious and outstanding wide receivers during his 13-year career in the National Football League. Playing for the New York Giants (1991–1993), San Francisco 49ers (1994) and the Denver Broncos (1995–2003), McCaffrey won three Super Bowl rings in Super Bowls XXIX, XXXII and XXXIII and was selected to start in the 1998 Pro Bowl. Ed McCaffrey established The McCaffrey Family Foundation to improve the lives of children, particularly within the State of Colorado. The goal of the Foundation is twofold: to assist children whose medical situation has created a hardship, whether it is financial or academic, and to assist children who show great promise, through exceptional academics and hard work. Special emphasis will be on providing educational enrichment programs and medical assistance.

About the Global Down Syndrome Foundation
The Global Down Syndrome Foundation is a public non-profit 501(c)(3) dedicated to significantly improving the lives of people with Down syndrome through research, medical care, education and advocacy. Formally established in 2009, the Foundation’s primary focus is to support the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, the first academic home in the US committed to research and medical care for people with the condition. Fundraising and government advocacy that corrects the alarming disparity of national funding for people with Down syndrome is a major short-term goal. The Foundation organizes the Be Beautiful Be Yourself Fashion Show – the single largest annual fundraiser benefitting people with Down syndrome. Programmatically, the Foundation organizes and funds many programs and conferences including the Dare to Play Football and Cheer Camps, Global Down Syndrome Educational Series and Global Down Syndrome Multi-Language Resource Project. The Foundation is an inclusive organization without political or religious affiliation or intention.