Annual basketball tournament raises money for local park

Published: Jul. 13, 2019 at 6:04 PM EDT
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The fourth annual Hoops for Hope tipped off Saturday morning.

Teams from multiple states laced up their shoes for the basketball tournament in Louisa.

Sports are known to bring people together.

"Rise Above's mission is "Together making things better," said organizer Matt Brown.

That's what the Lawrence County tournament is aimed to do.

"This tournament brings all kinds of different families, individuals, businesses, politicians, everybody comes together," explained Brown.

Proceeds from the tournament go to renovations to a nearby park.

The park is located beside of the Louisa City Pool.

"Giving toward a greater cause which is making this place a nicer place to play," Brown pointed out.

The tournament began four years ago.

"Me and a few other guys that kind of started this thing had suffered from addiction," Brown recalled.

Those organizers used their troubled past as a springboard to do something to impact their surrounding community.

"(We) decided to become part of the solution and not part of the problem anymore," said Brown.

Now, the tournament draws in people from different states.

"We have people from Baltimore, Philidelphia, Tennessee, from all over the place coming to Louisa, Kentucky to play basketball," Brown pointed out.

Justin Ponton is from West Virginia.

"This is a beautiful event for everyone, every single year," said Ponton.

Ponton and other players bring their families each year to the tournament.

"We love family and we love the community so this is the perfect event for that," explained Ponton.

Organizers hope the renovations to the park will create a safe place for families to make memories. "And develop hobbies that they can carry into the rest of their life," said Brown.

Plus, a little bit of cash for the champions.

"This year we're giving away $3,000 to the winning team," Brown said.

If you missed the games on Saturday, the tournament will continue on Sunday.

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