ALBERT LEA, Minnesota -- You may have seen it on TV each summer and winter. The X Games thrill fans with big air and crazy tricks. Today at Southwest Middle School in Albert Lea, the X Games brought a message to students, one about love and respect.
Shred Hate is a bullying prevention program through a partnership between the X Games, ESPN, MLB and the non-profit No Bully. X Games commentator Brandon Graham says spreading this message is the most rewarding about his job.
"It honestly is the best thing that we do, I think we put on the Super Bowl of action sports," Graham said. "Getting to be here in schools like Southwest is by far the most rewarding thing I know I do personally as part of the X Games."
Brandon was not the only one that spoke during the event. Southwest 7th grader Natasha Laue talked about her experiences with bullying because it could impact her fellow peers.
"At first it was, like, really nerve-wracking," Laue said. "And then, like, you know what? Let me just do it and see what other people think. See if they're going through it because you never know if anyone else is going through it."
Natasha gets to go to this summer's X Games at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. Students got their own piece of the games as well, with some coming home with a t-shirt, hat or an autograph from Graham.
Southwest Principal Chris Dibble said seeing the smiles on the student's faces is the best part of the event.
"It's good to see the smiles on their faces because when you're dealing with bullying it's not a fun time," Dibble said. "So we do a lot of talking about the difference between conflict and bullying. To bring something together like this that rewards them for doing the right thing and working with us to make it a better place to learn, that's really what we're looking for."