INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (ADAMS) – Pacers Sports & Entertainment is proud to announce “Basketballidays” presented by JAKKS Pacific Toys as we spread the joys of toys and hoops to Indiana cities steeped in Indiana basketball tradition.
The 10th annual toy giveaway, part of the Season of Giving delivered by Papa John’s, is again made possible by the donation of thousands of toys from JAKKS Pacific founder Stephen Berman, a close friend of PS&E Chairman & CEO Herb Simon.
“We are so grateful for Stephen’s overwhelming and continued generosity that continues to bring delight to thousands of Indiana children,” said Simon. “Our franchise and I could not have a better friend.”
In cooperation with local agencies, toys will be distributed to youth-serving organizations in:
• Plymouth, where former Pacer Scott Skiles and Trester Award winner Phil Wendel led the Pilgrims to the 1985 state championship; toy distribution will be Monday, Dec. 2, at 9 a.m. at Plymouth High School.
• Muncie, home to Muncie Central High Bearcats, the winningest state championship (8) school; toy distribution will be Monday, Dec. 2, 3:30 p.m., at Mitchell Early Childhood Center.
• Knightstown, location of the famous Hoosiers Gym and the fictional Hickory Huskers of the cinematic sports classic Hoosiers; toy distribution will be Wednesday, Dec. 4, at 10 a.m. at Hoosiers Gym.
• Crawfordsville, the birthplace of Indiana basketball and home to the first state championship team in 1911; toy distribution will be Thursday, Dec. 5 at 4:15 p.m. at Boys and Girls Club of Montgomery County.
• Fort Wayne, home to the Pacers’ G League affiliate the Mad Ants as well as numerous Indiana basketball standouts; toy distribution will be Friday, Dec. 6, 3:30 p.m., at Boys and Girls Club of Fort Wayne.
• Martinsville, boyhood home of legendary coach John Wooden, whose UCLA Bruins later captured 10 NCAA championships in 12 years; toy distribution will be Thursday, Dec. 12, 10 a.m., at Martinsville Central Education Center.
• Evansville, where the hometown University of Evansville Aces of legendary Coach Arad McCutcheon were the dominant NCAA Division II program of the ‘60s and ‘70s; toy distribution will be Friday, Dec. 13, 1 p.m. (CST) at Daniel Waltz Elementary School.
In addition to toys, Pacers Sports & Entertainment also will donate 100 Pacers and Fever basketballs in each of the cities. The statewide toy giveaway, which in the past also has visited Bloomington, Columbus, Seymour, Terre Haute, Connersville, Muncie, Kokomo, Greencastle, and Lafayette, is in addition to the toys that are being distributed to 50 youth-serving agencies in Indianapolis and Central Indiana.
The giveaway will include the Pacers’ game against the Boston Celtics on Dec. 11 with Mr. Berman being recognized in an in-game presentation.
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