CLEVELAND, Ohio – The City of Cleveland will launch Hoops After Dark, a six-week NBA-style basketball tournament and development program designed for men ages 18 to 26.
The program is supported by the Cavaliers and is part of Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb’s violence-prevention strategy.
Tryouts for the eight-team league are scheduled for Monday, June 27, and Wednesday, June 29, at Cudell and Zelma George recreation centers. The tournament will run from Monday, July 11, through Friday, Aug. 19.
The initiative is an extension of the former midnight basketball programs that aim to curb crime and create community.
An hour before each game, competitors will be required to attend life-skills workshops that focus on a variety of topics – job readiness, financial literacy, gun safety and more. Participants will be connected to wellness services that target emotional, social, spiritual, physical, environmental and occupational health.
The basketball format will include NBA-style activities such as tryouts, a draft and a championship.
Two games – Monday and Wednesday nights – and practices are scheduled each week at Cudell Recreation Center, 1910 West Blvd., and Zelma George Neighborhood Recreation Center, 3155 MLK Jr. Dr.
Tryouts will take place 8:30 to 10:30 pm Monday, June 27, at Cudell and Wednesday, June 29, at Zelma George.
Participants who arrive by 8 pm can take advantage of provided transportation from recreation centers:
• Cleveland Estabrook, 4125 Fulton Road
• Gunning Park, 16700 Puritas Ave.
• Glenville, 680 E. 113th St.
• Frederick Douglass, 15401 Miles Ave.
• Cleveland Thurgood Marshall, 8611 Hough Ave.
• Fairfax, 2335 E. 82nd St.
Cavaliers CEO Nic Barlage said in a release that the program fits what the team strives to support in the community.
“We are investing in the future of these men and in our city and neighborhoods,” he said.
I am on cleveland.com‘s life and culture team and cover food, beer, wine and sports-related topics. If you want to see my stories, here’s a directory on cleveland.com. Bill Wills of WTAM-1100 and I talk food and drink usually at 8:20 am Thursday morning. Twitter: @Bobona30.
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