An NFL star want to make his hometown more fit - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

An NFL star want to make his hometown more fit

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Finklea-Robinson Field, the home of Americus-Sumter High School, host of Leonard Pope's event to keep kids fit on April 30th. Finklea-Robinson Field, the home of Americus-Sumter High School, host of Leonard Pope's event to keep kids fit on April 30th.
Leonard Pope showing off the form that makes him one of the NFL's top tight ends. Leonard Pope showing off the form that makes him one of the NFL's top tight ends.
Pope makes a point during last year's Keeping Kids Fit Day in Americus. Pope makes a point during last year's Keeping Kids Fit Day in Americus.
The most famous patch of grass in Americus.  Leonard Pope caught a touchdown on this patch of grass to win the state championship for Americus-Sumter. The most famous patch of grass in Americus. Leonard Pope caught a touchdown on this patch of grass to win the state championship for Americus-Sumter.
Kids play a pick up football game behind Finklea-Robinson Field, home of Leonard Pope's Keep Kids Fit Day on April 30th. Kids play a pick up football game behind Finklea-Robinson Field, home of Leonard Pope's Keep Kids Fit Day on April 30th.
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By Jay Polk - bio | email

AMERICUS, GA (WALB) - A pro athlete from south Georgia is tackling one of the nation's biggest problems facing young people.

Leonard Pope was a star football player at Americus-Sumter High School before going on to the University of Georgia and the NFL.

For the past five years, he's returned to his hometown to headline a program to fight childhood obesity, which has more than tripled over the last 30 years. Pope says as an NFL player, he has a responsibility to give back to his community.

"I just want to give back and show the kids you don't have to sit inside and play games all day. You never know what you can be when you grow up," he said.

Pope's annual kids day is scheduled for April 30th at Finklea Robinson Field in Americus - the same field where he starred a decade ago.

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