Myles Garrett is spending the weekend giving back to local kids

CLEVELAND — Myles Garrett is no stranger to giving back. From the artwork he’s commissioned around Cleveland to the food drives he hosts during the holidays, Garrett is always looking to get out there and make an impact in the community. But this weekend, Garrett went all out, spending his time giving back to local kids in a fun way.

Pleasure being the key word.

“Have fun, that’s what it’s all about,” Garrett said.

And that’s exactly what he did. It all started Friday night at the Valley View Cinemark Theater. Garrett hosted groups of children from United Way and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History at the theater, giving them an exclusive red carpet screening of the new film Jurassic World: Dominion.

Garrett has always had a love for dinosaurs and archeology, and while he knows he is capable of inspiring kids to love the sport, he also said he hopes events like these can also instill a love of science.

Garrett’s friends, including Browns defensive tackle Glen Logan, defensive end Chase Winovich, and fullback Johnny Stanton came out to support Garrett at the film screening and saw the film for themselves. Everyone took the time to say hello to the young fans, take photos with them and create lasting memories.

But Garrett’s appearance was the most coveted, with children lining the red carpet calling his name, reaching out for high-fives and asking “Mr. Garrett” for autographs, to which he was happy.

“I was a kid like that. It was with my brother, watching Vince Carter and Jason Kidd and Richard Jefferson and all these guys thinking ‘wow this is amazing’, just trying to play ball with them, trying to get them to sign things. I never thought I’d be on the other side,” Garrett said. “Now that I am, I want to be able to show how much I love and appreciate them all.”

After a long night at the movies, Garrett continued the fun Saturday morning by hosting his first-ever Pro Camp at Gilmour Academy.

Garrett was greeted with cheers from children and showered with compliments from his young fans.

“Myles is throwing some pennies today, he could play quarterback for sure!”

“Myles just shook my hand, I’ll never wash that hand again!”

“Good luck this season Myles, we’ve got your back.”

Garrett made his rounds at Pro Camp, hitting base in every age group, named appropriately for the different phases of his football career – the Warriors were the youngest kids in camp, named after his high school team, the Aggies were the middle age group, named after his varsity team, and the oldest kids in camp were the Browns, where he is now.

Throughout the day, Garrett made sure the kids had fun, while also having fun himself.

“You’re never going to give as much as you can if you don’t like it, if you don’t really feel like you belong,” Garrett said. “I want them to be able to come out here and enjoy the game.

Garrett hasn’t been easy with the kids though, keeping the little ones tight, sprinkling a bit of power behind his passes and playing ball fight.

“You have to teach them young,” laughed Garrett. “If you want to go get it, you have to go earn it.”

Even Garrett’s trainer, Kevin Stefanski, showed up to see the student become the master.

The weekend was filled with fun events, and it continues on Sunday, with Day 2 of Garrett’s Pro Camp scheduled. Making sure the people he meets have fun is a priority for Garrett, but what really matters to the defensive end are the lasting memories he is able to leave behind in the place he calls now at home.

“It’s entirely my being and who I want to be as a person,” Garrett said. “And I’m going to do my best for this community for as long as I can.”

Camryn Justice is a reporter for News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.

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