Future and Former Stars to Hoop it Up

Updated 7 years ago Jenny Scarborough

You're never too young, or too old, for Ocracoke's favorite team sport.

The annual Ocracoke Child Care Hoop-a-Thon will be Saturday, March 23. The event begins at 9:45 a.m. with the infants, toddlers and pre-schoolers hitting the court at Ocracoke School, taking aim at hoops designed for their growing bodies.
Future and Former Stars to Hoop it Up

"There are even little baby hoops. It's a fun show," said OCC Director Jennifer Daniels.

An adult three-on-three tournament will follow the Hoop-a-Thon, then there'll be a school-age Shoot-Out contest. Kids are welcome to join the shoot-out for $3 a person.

The championship three-on-three game will close the day.

Community members and visitors are encouraged to attend and root for their favorite team. The sharp-shooters will represent local favorites Duke, NC State, Carolina, and ECU. Teams or individual kids can be sponsored, with a donation pledged for each made basket. A flyer with details will be mailed to all local boxholders.

The Hoop-a-Thon has been going on for over a decade, and is one of the more popular fundraisers for Ocracoke's non-profit day care center, upon whom many working parents and business owners rely.

Entrance to the half court 3 on 3 tournament costs a mere $15, or $5 per player. If Cheri Ely, Cathy Scarborough and Alice Burruss are willing to field a team, Jennifer Esham, Sarah Fiore and I are gunning to take them on, in what promises be a display of unrivaled athletic skill. This was planned over wine at Zillie's and now that it is publicly writ, it will surely happen.

There will be no losers, only winners in the adult match ups. Winning teams advance, and losers get to hit the hot dog and bake sale which begins at 11 a.m.
Formal Community League games didn't happen over the winter, though a number of island men regularly play, and "a bunch of people go play in Washington," said Daniels. Sign up at the Post Office, Child Care Center, or show up with your entry fee and team before 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 23 to play. Attention Daniel Ortega, David Scott Esham, Adam Burleson, Keith Gaskins, Wade Austin, Mel Perez, et al: this means you! Show us that while some of us never had it on the court, others still got it. Jason Wells is helping organize the 3 on 3 competition, and can answer questions.

I had one question for the "big" kids at Ocracoke Child Care. What's your favorite thing about the Hoop-a-Thon?

"I did it," said Imanol Guerrero-Perez. He and Griffin Wells are both confident they will dunk the basketball someday, and look forward to giving us a preview at the Hoop-a-Thon.

Griffin knows Dolphin basketball is in his future. "Andrew (Tillett) is my cousin, and Mila (Ortiz) is my cousin," he said. "I don't get to go to big school until next year."

"I went to a basketball game this year," said Essie O'Neal, licking peanut butter from her fingers.

Jonah Daniels is ready. "I like to shoot the ball," he said, then ducked his curly head and smiled winningly.

Peace begins in the playground!

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