Upward Basketball program gearing up for start of new season

Upward Basketball at Mighty Rivers in Cairo is gearing up for its 18th season.  

Four registrations were held during the last month. Organizers reported that 125 basketball players and 39 cheerleaders have been sized for uniforms and completed their skill drill sets.  

The kids are excited to start the season. Teams are being formed and practice times finalized.

There are still openings in the ministry that are yet to be filled.  

Upward is looking for coaches, referees, halftime devotion leaders, National Anthem presenters and scoreboard assistants.  

In announcing plans for the new season, those involved in Upward Basketball shared that “the community’s own tragedies and conflicts among the youth has begun serious dialogue on what adults can do to make a change.   

“Upward basketball does not just support the athletic development of the players through sports, but attempts to reach them with a greater message.  

“Treating others with respect while respecting ourselves, following the example of Jesus Christ, and determining the spirit that will reside makes a difference in the choices youth make as they grow.   

“A child growing up with a hope in Jesus Christ is going to be less likely to be disrespectful, encourage negative relationships, or commit violent crimes.”  

Those who want to volunteer can in one of the following ways:

For only five minutes, use musical talents to present the National Anthem. Musical instruments, individuals and groups are welcome to present the National Anthem before eight game days.  

For 10 minutes, volunteer to be a halftime devotion leader.  

Give a testimony, share a personal experience or lead a devotional. A total of 72 halftime devotions will be shared with players, cheerleaders and fans. Rob Moore can be contacted to schedule a halftime devotion.

For 60 minutes, referees are needed for eight Game Days: six Saturdays and two Monday/Tuesday game days beginning Feb. 4. Games are played from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Volunteer coaches teach and encourage six to nine players for a season. Practices are scheduled to begin in January and are held for one hour, one night each week, for eight weeks. Bryan Klein can be contacted for more information. 

Organizers said that coaching “is a great opportunity to be a mentor and provide a positive example and role model for the community’s youth.”  

All games are played in the Mighty Rivers Activity Center on 10th Street in Cairo.

The theme this year is “Rise Up!” The theme is based on scripture from Nehemiah: “Let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for the good work.”  

For more information about volunteering, contact Heather Green 618-306-0578 or the church office at 618-734-0319.

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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