Only One | WNBA All-Star dispatch from CT

This column continues the Only One series with special reports on the 2015 WNBA All-Star Game.

Uncasville, Conn. — Unlike their male counterparts, the WNBA All-Star weekend is comparably low-key. No time-wasting celebrity contests or outdated dunk exhibitions, the All-Star women pros instead spend part of the morning with local kids.

Tamika Catchings
Tamika Catchings

“The women behind me…are nice and really fun,” proclaimed WNBA President Laurel Richie. She introduced six players: Riquna Williams, Kayla McBride, Brittney Griner, Shoni Schimmel, Alex Bentley and Tamika Catchings, before they worked with nearly 60 children from Mohegan Tribe Recreation Program and Ledyard Parks and Recreation in the annual WNBA Fit All-Star Clinic in various basketball and running drills.

Catchings advised the children about eating healthy, but admitted that French fries are her favorite comfort food. “It’s fun to be out there,” she pointed out. “We provided a presence here.”

Alex Bentley Clinic
Alex Bentley Clinic

First time All-Stars Williams and Bentley also had fun as well: “I love working with kids,” noted Williams. “It gives me ideas because one day I want to run my own foundation, and do something similar to this.”

Added Bentley, “The kids are so excited. I love being out here with them.”

“I just think it is a great way to tip off the weekend officially,” said Madame President. “The players are so excited to be here. This event I think relaxes them a little bit.”


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Charles Hallman is a contributing reporter and columnist at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder. He can be reached at

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