FORT LEE, V.A. (July 8, 2016) - Thousands of boys and girls in military communities are seeing their pro football heroes up close and personal through youth football ProCamps sponsored by Procter and Gamble in partnership with the Defense Commissary Agency.

"Beyond the everyday savings our patrons receive by shopping their commissary, our industry partners provide millions of dollars annually in additional or ancillary benefits to our patrons because a commissary is operating on their base," said Sallie Cauthers, DeCA's marketing and mass media specialist. "Thanks to this partnership event, our patrons receive quality products at savings significantly lower than commercial stores and our military youth learn some football from some of the pro players they see on television."

From March through April, nearly 100 installations competed for the opportunity to host a free, two-day ProCamp for first through eighth grade youth of active duty military, reservists, retirees, and DOD civilian employees. The 11 winning military installations qualify for a camp based on their patrons' purchases of select items in their local commissaries.

Camp participants learn from and play with NFL players such as Andre Roberts (Detroit Lions), Alejandro Villanueva (Pittsburgh Steelers), Patrick Peterson (Arizona Cardinals), Steve Smith Sr. (Baltimore Ravens) and Darren McFadden (Dallas Cowboys).

The first stateside camp of the year kicked off June 13-14 at Fort Polk, Louisiana, led by Arizona Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson. Several camps have already been held at bases overseas, at Ramstein Air Base, Germany and Okinawa, Japan.

This marks the fourth year P&G has partnered with the commissary to run the NFL Military ProCamps program at installations worldwide, said Molly Fanning of Blue Chip Marketing, the firm handling publicity for this Procter & Gamble event.

"We have been throughout the United States, to Germany and also Japan," she said. "We hope to continue to grow the program next year as well."

ProCamps manages and operates sports camps around the world led by professional athletes. These camps take place on military bases and are designed to teach the fundamentals of football, teamwork and how to make new friends, Fanning added.

"ProCamps also uses sports to impart important life lessons in a safe place," Fanning said. "This program is in line with the Department of Defense's Healthy Lifestyles Initiative. The athletes infuse a message of healthy eating and staying active into every part of a ProCamp day.

"Our program started in 2013 with three camps and has grown significantly over the past few years," Fanning said. "Our first camps were with Steve Smith Sr. and Andre Roberts. They are really the face of the program and both of them have done more camps than any other athlete."

ProCamps Schedule

• June 20-21: Fort Meade, Maryland, Steve Smith Sr., wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Cougars Football Field); autograph signing at commissary: June 20, 11 a.m.

• June 21-22: Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, Jonathan Stewart, running back, Carolina Panthers; Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Murphy Field); autograph signing at Fort Eustis Commissary: June 21, 4:30 p.m.

• June 23-24: Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas, Darren McFadden, running back, Dallas Cowboys; Day 1: 4-7 p.m.; Day 2: 4-7 p.m. (Warfit Pavilion); autograph signing at commissary: June 23, 2:30 p.m.

• June 26-27: Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, Andre Roberts, wide receiver, Detroit Lions; Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Youth Sports Field); autograph signing at commissary: June 26, 11 a.m.

• June 29-30: Fort Hood, Texas, Steve Smith Sr., wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens; Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (field TBD); autograph signing at Clear Creek Commissary (Fort Hood 1): June 29, 4:30 p.m.

• July 6-7: Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, Steve Smith Sr., wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens; Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (James Sports Center Turf Football Field); autograph signing at commissary: July 6, 4:30 p.m.

• July 8-9: Fort Carson, Colorado, Mark Sanchez, quarterback, Denver Broncos; Day 1: 9 a.m.- noon; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Pershing Field); autograph signing at commissary: July 8, 1 p.m.

• July 12-13: Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, Andre Roberts, wide receiver, Lions; Day 1: 4-7 p.m.; Day 2: 4-7 p.m. (field adjacent to the Kennecott Youth Center); autograph signing at Anchorage Area Commissary: July 12, 11:30 a.m.

• July 14-15: Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story, Virginia, Alejandro Villanueva, offensive tackle, Pittsburgh Steelers; Day 1: 1-4 p.m.; Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Sulinski Field); autograph signing at Little Creek Commissary: July 14, 4:30 p.m.

• July 19-20: Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, Graham Gano, kicker, Carolina Panthers; Day 1: 1-4 p.m., Day 2: 9 a.m. - noon (Barrancas Ballfield); autograph signing at commissary: July 19, 4:30 p.m.