Monday, September 12, 2016

"La Fiebre!" Indiana Fever Superfan Lucy Brown Shares Her Love of Tamika Catchings and Forest Glen Elementary

Friday night we took in the WNBA Indiana Fever vs. Chicago Sky game at Banker's Life Fieldhouse. The Fever donned a special uniform of pink to honor its VIP guests: scores of local breast cancer survivors receiving a hero's welcome from the nearly eleven thousand rowdy fans. 

In another swift, on-the-edge-of-your-seat game, guard Briann January led The Fever with a season-high 20 points on 5-for-7 shooting, including the Fever’s last seven points in the final minute, not to mention six assists. Free agent guard Erica Wheeler sunk 16 points with a career-high three 3-pointers. The Fever edged out the Sky 95-88. With their win against the Washington Mystics on Sunday, the Fever has clinched its 12th consecutive playoff appearance--a record in the WBNA, and the third-longest active playoff streak of all major American professional sports leagues. Go, Fever!

All the players are a blur in crunch time. 
Fever games are always a party, bringing out a diverse crowd of young and old, kids, teens, families, and general sports fanatics. During playoff games, it is common to see the majority of the Indiana Pacers cheering on our 2012 World Champion Team. The Indiana Fever is a class act, and watching the fans is almost as fun as watching the action on the floor. Fever fans represent Indy's finest citizens—spirited, inclusive, and always up for a good time. But don’t take our word for it. Here’s what Fever head coach Stephanie White had to say about the Fever’s loyal fans:  “Our crowds are amazing. They give us a lift. They did that tonight. You could just feel the energy in the building when we needed a stop, and they got loud.”

Adding to the wizardry on the court and spirit in the audience are the gymnastic and comedic antics of Freddie Fever; the fun-packed audience contests; and the infectious groove of the Fever's Inferno Hip Hop Team. Attending a Fever game is always the winning ticket.
The electrifying Inferno Hip Hop Squad always brings the 'tude.
In the crowd Friday night was super-fan duo Lucy Brown and her father Steve, who have been cheering on the Fever for years. Lucy is a third grader at Forest Glen Elementary in Indianapolis. An aspiring journalist, Lucy is no stranger to media interviews. She recently interviewed her pediatrician for a science and speech project at her school and was excited to be a first-time interviewee. 

Steve Brown of Indianapolis with daughter Lucy enjoying a fun-filled Friday night in downtown Indianapolis at the Fever game. 

Lucy's favorite class at school is art because she loves to draw and paint. "She also loves to tell and write stories," added Steve. Maybe someday you'll grace the stage of a Jabberwocky: Storytelling Arts of Indiana event, Lucy! 

Lucy is an athlete as well as an artist and writer. She loves playing softball, and her favorite position is catcher. Her favorite Fever player is Tamika Catchings. When pressed with the age-old question, "What in the world is Freddie Fever?" Lucy replied, "He is a lot of animals rolled into one, but I think he most resembles a Phoenix." Sounds right to us, Lucy!
Lucy Brown and Freddie Fever discuss game strategy during a time-out.
Dad Steve had this to say about their night's choice of entertainment: "We just love going to Fever games, and I love spending time with Lucy. Tonight her mom took [Lucy's] brother to a football game." When asked what they love most about Indianapolis, Steve and Lucy both emphatically agreed: the schools. 

Lucy and her older brother, Henry, both attend Forest Glen, which is a language magnet school of MSD of Lawrence Township. At just nine years old, Lucy is already fluent in Spanish. At one point, she began speaking a mile a minute with great enthusiasm in Spanish, but I lost her after "¿Cómo está?" 

Steve explained that the school offers different levels of opportunities for both non-native and native speakers of Spanish. He added that Forest Glen is the number one Spanish immersion school in the country, and that college credit--namely a minor degree in Spanish--is awarded to those that graduate from the program. 

Lucy cheers on her favorite team, The Fever, while representing her favorite school, Forest Glen Elementary. 

We found the following information on the website of Forest Glen Elementary. Take a look and be amazed at some of the fantastic learning opportunities offered by our public schools: 

"The Full Immersion Program is available from kindergarten through grade 12, with kindergarten through 6th grades at Forest Glen. In grades K-2, students receive 80% of their instruction in Spanish and 20% of their instruction is in English.  In 3rd grade, students receive 70% of their instruction in Spanish and 30% of their instruction in English.  In grades 4, 5 and 6 half of the instructional day is taught in Spanish; the remainder is taught in English. By the end of elementary school, students in the Immersion Program are able to speak, read and write in both English and Spanish.

In Dual Immersion, half of the students in the class are dominant Spanish speakers and half are dominant English speakers.  Instruction follows the same percentages as the Full Immersion Program. In Dual Immersion, however, students are purposely mixed in the same classroom to assist each other in language development.  By the end of elementary school, students in the Dual Immersion Program are able to speak, read and write in both English and Spanish, as well.

Forest Glen teachers are fluent in the language they use for instruction, and in nearly all situations are dominant speakers of that language. Along with the language component, the school curriculum uses the Writers’ and Readers’ Workshops, which immerse students in reading and writing. The Five Easy Steps to a Balanced Math Program allows students to apply math skills and reasoning ability to solve real-life problems. The result: Lifelong readers who are able to articulate themselves orally and in writing, and confident mathematicians with a deep conceptual understanding of the subject."

“It’s been exciting watching Henry and Lucy help each other become bilingual,” Steve shared with us. “Our favorite restaurant is La Hacienda because all the employees always come greet us at our table. 'Enrique and Lucilla' are their favorite customers." 

Be sure to cheer on The Fever next Sunday, September 18, as they take on the Dallas Wings for their final game before playoffs. Incidentally, this game will mark Indy's beloved #24 MVP Tamika Catchings' final (regular series) game. Get tickets here.

Crowds will say a teary goodbye to #24 Tamika Catchings, ten-time WNBA All-Star, next Sunday. 
To learn more about Catchings' twenty-year career and her thoughts on her final Olympics and her final season with The Fever, check out her blog.

Tamika Catchings is a big fan of Indy's own Act A Foo Improv Crew! Here she was as the guest of honor at their Christmas show last year! Check out our recent story on Act A Foo here!

From left: Joshua Owens, Ennis Adams, Daniel Martin, Tamika Catchings, Joshua Short, and NEWLYWED Jocque Carey. (Congratulations Jocque and Le-Asiah!)

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