TV star Miles Brown promotes new group

Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan Mace’s Lane Middle School students, teachers and staff joined Cambridge Police Department officers to welcome television personality Miles Brown, at center. The young actor was in town on Friday to mark the beginning of the city’s Police Athletic League.

Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan
Mace’s Lane Middle School students, teachers and staff joined Cambridge Police Department officers to welcome television personality Miles Brown, at center. The young actor was in town on Friday to mark the beginning of the city’s Police Athletic League.

CAMBRIDGE – A PAL can do a kid a lot of good. In this case, that’s the Police Athletic League, which marked its start on Friday at Mace’s Lane Middle School with a visit from television actor Miles Brown.

Miles, who is 13 and in eighth grade, came from his home in California to promote the program, which he said gave him his start in show business. “I took dance lessons, and that led to acting,” he told the packed gymnasium.

All students were present for the assembly, as were many administrators, teachers and staff. Police Chief Mark Lewis was on hand, with many of his officers.
City Council Member La-Shon Foster got the program started by stating the council’s support, saying, “We are proud to have this new relationship.”

A good relationship can sometimes make all the difference. “We’re trying to change the perception of law enforcement,” Officer John Foster said. “Even though we wear the shield, we’re parents and grandparents, too.”

The league’s beginning at the middle school is also a test for the concept. “Hopefully, it will expand beyond Mace’s Lane to elementary schools,” Officer Foster said.
If the league and its activities are as popular as the assembly was, it will be quite successful – the joint was jumping, and the excited students could barely contain themselves when Miles Brown spoke. He told them about his own experiences, and said, “I want to pass it on to you.”

He played basketball with a boy and girl, and took part in a dance off. The star dancer had his work cut out for him there – one girl did two back flips, giving him a fair bit of competition.

While there was plenty of fun on Friday, there was a serious purpose behind it.

“The National Association of Police Athletic/Activities League, Inc. exists to aid in the preventing of juvenile crime and violence by providing mentorship, civic/service, athletic, recreational, enrichment and educational opportunities,” the group’s national website says. “Studies have shown that if a young person engages and interacts with law enforcement on the ball field, gym or classroom, the youth will likely come to respect the laws that police officers enforce. Such respect is beneficial to the youth, the police officer, the neighborhood and the business community.”

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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