Sports

Sports World Helps Joplin Rebuild

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Missouri Governor Jay Nixon explains the 2012 Governor’s Joplin Habitat Challenge in Columbia, Missouri on February 4, 2012. The challenge, in partnership with Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity and Missouri’s major athletic organizations, plans to build 35 new homes in the heart of Joplin during 2012 to provide continued aid to the city’s recovery from a tornado that killed 161 people on May 22, 2011. Paticipating in the press conference are from R to L  St. Louis Rams wide receiver Danario Alexander,Kansas City Royals pitcher Aaron Crow, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel, former St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Andy Benes and National Hockey League Hall of Fame member and former St. Louis Blues Bernie Federko. UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon explains the 2012 Governor’s Joplin Habitat Challenge in Columbia, Missouri on February 4, 2012. The challenge, in partnership with Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity and Missouri’s major athletic organizations, plans to build 35 new homes in the heart of Joplin during 2012 to provide continued aid to the city’s recovery from a tornado that killed 161 people on May 22, 2011. Paticipating in the press conference are from R to L St. Louis Rams wide receiver Danario Alexander,Kansas City Royals pitcher Aaron Crow, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel, former St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Andy Benes and National Hockey League Hall of Fame member and former St. Louis Blues Bernie Federko. UPI/Bill Greenblatt

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Flanked by representatives from Missouri pro sports teams prior to the Kansas-Missouri basketball game, Governor Jay Nixon launched an effort to build 35 houses in tornado-devastated Joplin.

Nixon, who’s getting athletic organizations to partner with Habitat for Humanity, launched the Joplin Habitat Challenge Saturday night. Among the sports luminaries were Blues Hall of Famer Bernie Federko, Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel and former Cardinals pitcher Andy Benes.

Nixon said the state will provide a $3.6 million Community Development Block Grant. The funds will be used for purchasing land and materials, as well as hiring construction leaders and a volunteer coordinator.

The public can visit www.mo.gov  to volunteer with a specific organization in Joplin or to donate to the cause.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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