BOSTON (CBS) — Tom Brady kicked off one of his favorite weekends of the year by tossing touchdowns to some of his best buddies.
Friday night opened up the 15th annual Best Buddies Challenge: Hyannis Port, a two-day event to benefit Best Buddies International, a nonprofit dedicated to creating opportunities for friendship, employment and leadership training for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The Patriots quarterback, a co-chair of the event, hosted the Tom Brady Football Challenge, taking the field with many of his teammates from both past and present and several Best Buddies for a flag football game at Harvard Stadium.
“Best Buddies is an important organization with a great message to share, and I am so proud to support their work,” said Brady. “I hope my role as Honorary Co-Chair will continue to bring attention to the organization’s mission of friendship and inclusion for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities across the world.”
Brady slung passes to the current teammates Julian Edelman, Jerod Mayo, and Nate Solder, as well as past Patriots like Joe Andruzzi, Zoltan Mesko and 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Scott Zolak.
“You get down here like I did 13 years ago for the first time and I always wanted to be a part of it,” Brady said of the event. “We’ve had a great team of people who work hard to get it all together and there’s a big rides that raises a lot of money. Hopefully we can get to $4.5 million-$5 million over the course of the weekend.”
The game was followed by the Guy Fieri Celebrity Chef Tailgate Party, hosted by Fieri and some of Boston’s top chefs. Tony DiCenso of Rino’s Place, Steve DiFillippo of Davio’s Restaurant, Jay Hajj of Mike’s City Diner, Paul Malvone of Boston Burger Company and Ken Oringer of Clio, Uni, Toro, Coppa, Earth restaurants, joined Fieri at this year’s tailgate party, and they each worked with several lucky Best Buddies participants who served as their sous-chefs and helped them prepare food for the feast.
More than 1,500 people are expected to participate in this year’s Challenge – a charity walk, run and ride to benefit Best Buddies International — on Saturday afternoon. A 100-mile bike ride will begin at 7 a.m. at the JFK Library in Boston and end in Hyannis, with Brady leading Team Tom Brady to the finish line. There is also a 5K walk/run, a 50-mile bike ride from Carver to Hyannis and a 20-mile race from Sandwich.
The event will close with a victory celebration cookout at Craigville Beach in Hyannis.
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