Play Ball!

Malcolm A. Smith

July 28, 2009

Joined by LL Cool J and One Try Competition (OTC), I am excited to present the annual summer basketball tournament "Jump and Ball", which celebrates its fifth anniversary this year. This year’s tournament will take place from Saturday, August 2, 2008 through Sunday, August 31, 2008 at the Daniel O’Connell Park in St. Albans, Queens.

The Jump and Ball Tournament began in 2005 and is held annually at the Daniel O’Connell Park.  It provides recreational activities to youth between the ages of 12 and 18 throughout Southeast Queens. The 5-week program exposes over 100 young people to activities that teach them team-building, sportsmanship, and leadership skills.

The program features competitive basketball games and double-dutch jump rope competitions, in addition to a myriad of others including chess, tennis, and karate that showcase the community’s diverse talents. There will also be special musical performances, back-to-school giveaways, food and beverages, and carnival rides, all provided free of charge, as part of the fun-filled festivities.

Summer break is an important time for young people to get out of the classroom, active in the sun and beat the heat. "Jump and Ball" is a great way for them to connect with their peers and reconnect with the community, and it is a testament to the program's success that it is heading into its fifth year. I am excited to be a part of "Jump and Ball V" and help the youth of Southeast Queens by providing them with positive activities in which to engage this summer.

See the attached flyer for more information on the program. "Jump and Ball V" seeks volunteers to help out as coaches, volunteers, and youth counselors. I encourage you to get involved and give back to your community by investing in the New Yorkers of tomorrow.