The Mount Baker senior boys basketball team is heading out to its second tournament of the season this weekend as part of an eight tournament schedule over the winter and spring.
All that travel—mostly to Alberta—adds up over a season, and the team has budgeted it out to roughly $18,000 to cover costs that include transportation and bus driver, hotel rooms and tournament entry fees.
Thats a serious chunk of change and the boys (not to mention parents) are hoping to cut down on the expense with some fundraising ventures over the season.
“When the kids are younger and they just play in the Kootenays, it’s not near as crazy, but as soon as they start having to go out of the area—other options is to go to the Okanagan, which is even further away,” said team manager Pearl Singer.
First up on the docket is a training camp for some younger students spanning Grade 7 to Grade 9 in the New Year on Jan. 4.
Running all day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Wild will be on hand, along with their coach, to run drills and work with young basketball proteges.
Cost is $35 a player.
“We thought Grade 7 to 9 was a good age because basketball is just going to be starting in January and a lot of them haven’t been practicing or doing much towards it, so it’d be a good warm-up,” said Singer.
After that, the team has kicked around some other ideas and are looking at organizing an alumni game which will pit former Mount Baker basketball players—men and women—against their current counterparts.
“The girls and the boys are playing the alumni—anybody who’s played on a senior team can come play, so it’s just a fun night,” said Singer.
That event will be held at the Mount Baker gym on Wednesday, Jan. 23, with the girls starting at 6 p.m. and followed by the boys two hours later.
There will be a concession and a free-throw competition in between games.
Other initiatives include silent auctions and a high school dance on Valentine’s Day in February.
The team is also turning to the business community, according to Singer.
“We’re going to different businesses or organizations that the boys deal with, or their parents deal with and asking if they want to sponsor the team,” Singer said. “Some of those business have given us items, which we are using for silent auctions.”
Anyone interested in signing up to the Mount Baker camp on Jan. 4 can call Singer at 250-426-7410.