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“Go Shoeless” campaign makes annual stop at V-Reds games

It may have been a chilly fall day at BMO Centre, but the weather didn’t stop plenty of people from going shoeless during Saturday’s soccer games.

Right To Play’s “Go Shoeless” campaign is an annual, nation-wide event. On Saturday, the Go Shoeless movement hit the UNB Varsity Reds men’s and women’s soccer games.

The concept of the event is simple enough — fans make a donation and check their shoes in at the door in an effort to help raise money and awareness for Right To Play’s initiatives.

“It’s exactly like a coat check,” explained vice president of the Right To Play UNB club, Aly Pickard-Tattrie. “You leave your shoes and at the end of the day we give your shoes back.”

Pickard-Tattrie said the event, which has been taking place at UNB for a number of years now, is used to help children around the world who can’t afford shoes and also to promote play and active education.

Along with fans, members of the Varsity Reds and Cape Breton Capers men’s and women’s coaching staffs took part. UNB women’s coach Jon Crossland went barefoot while men’s coach Miles Pinsent wore socks.

Despite the cold weather, the event proved popular as quite a few people could be seen walking around the stadium with no shoes on. For those that found it a bit too cold but still wanted to do their part, t-shirts and bracelets could also be purchased.

Founded in 2000, Right To Play uses, according to their website, “the transformative power of play to educate and empower children facing adversity.”

The Right to Play UNB club hosts a number of events each year. Students are welcome to join and more information can be found on the club’s Facebook group.

On Oct. 7, the club hopes to set the Guinness World Record for the largest capture the flag game.

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