Lake Oswego Junior High staff to play against Harlem Wizards in fundraising game
The world-famous Harlem Wizards will stop by Lake Oswego Junior High School to face off against a team of teachers and staff called the Salty Sailors on Wednesday, Oct. 5, to raise money for the school.
The event is hosted by the middle school's parent club, and all proceeds will support the purchase of items to improve classroom curriculum and after-school activities. The fundraiser will occur across the street at the Lake Oswego High School west gym at 7 p.m.
The Harlem Wizards are a professional basketball team created in the 1960s. Unlike most basketball teams, the Wizards are not primarily focused on winning games; instead, the team aims to entertain the crowd using various stunts and tricks. Since its conception, the team has partnered with schools and nonprofits across the U.S and other countries for fundraising events.
At the end of the 2021-22 academic year, the parent club was approached by the Harlem Wizards team and asked if they were interested in hosting a game in Lake Oswego. Parent club Vice President Megan Mann said her cousin in Florida had hosted a Wizards game before and it looked like a lot of fun, so the group went forward with the partnership.
The game's audience members will be asked to volunteer in various contests and acts. At the end of the event, students will be invited by Wizards players to have a dance celebration on the court.
"The experience at a Wizards game is the community, the school coming together for a night of good, pure fun and excitement — and it's a fundraiser," said Wizards representative Tristian Salazer in a press release. "What really takes it to another level is the participation of the kids in the on-court experiences, and local teams who take on the Wizards as the hometown heroes."
Tickets start at $15 and are available for purchase here. Community members can purchase tickets up until three hours before the event. Food will be available for purchase, FILLS donuts will be selling onsite and 20% of all their proceeds will go towards the Parent Club.
"With anything, we're not going to be successful without people filling the seats. So what I would say is that if people wanted to buy their tickets and get the best selection, they should do so now," Mann said.
Mann explained that the money raised from the fundraiser will help the parent club support the educational goals of the middle school. The funds raised also will help the club host future events held this upcoming academic year — one being the community service day for students. They are looking to buy a few specific items with the funds: new microscopes for science classrooms and microphones for the drama department (both of which were requested by staff members in those departments).
"I think we're most excited about the players on the Salty Sailors team — like the principal, vice principal, different teachers and staff — coming out and everyone just having fun," Mann said.
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