- National Teams
In just two days time, on Saturday 15th September, Crystal Palace National Sports Centre welcomes back FamFest, a charity event that celebrates the inseparable ties between basketball and music. FamFest has become renowned for it’s unique Old School v New School exhibition game, pitting some of the UK’s best ever players against a select team of elite U21s.
The two teams, nicknamed the Legends and the Challengers, do battle to the backdrop of classic old school beats with tons of on and off court competitions to keep fans engaged throughout.
This year’s Legends are littered with elite professional players past and present, including:
The Legends, wearing Red and Black, will be led by current London Lions Head Coach and Owner Vince Macaulay. Macaulay follows in the footsteps of Britain’s most successful coach ever – Kevin Cadle – who last year led the Legends to a nail-biting single point victory.
Last year’s team insist that the narrow result was a ‘pacing’ tactic to ‘keep the crowd entertained’.
Challenging for bragging rights are this year’s New School team, led for a second consecutive time by Surrey Heat Head Coach Creon Raftopoulos. Raftopoulos, assisted by James Vear who was recently appointed as Assistant Coach of the Dalhousie Tigers, came agonisingly close to victory last year and is keen to avenge that defeat. His roster, sponsored by the Luol Deng Foundation, includes:
Leon Bennet Harris
Final selections for both teams will be confirmed on Friday on the event’s Facebook account.
Organiser Luke Bowler believes FamFest is a pivotal event on the summer basketball calendar:
“The Old School v New School theme that is synonymous with FamFest gives long standing professional players a vehicle to give back to their community whilst teaching the next generation the importance of doing the same.”
Bowler also recognises that FamFest attracts a unique audience and is proud to challenge convention:
“Most basketball events on the summer calendar attract a basketball audience. FamFest attracts a family audience, many of whom have never seen a professional game. By keeping prices low and advertising in our local community, where we have a consistent presence delivering coaching services on a daily basis, we are able to give prospective fans a chance to sample the atmosphere of a live game in an intimate environment where they can interact with professional players.”
Tickets can be bought on the door from 12:30pm or in advance from http://www.famfest12.com/shop. Spectators with pre-booked tickets will benefit from faster entry. Tickets cost £5 for Adults, £4 for Children and £15 for a family of four. Doors open at 12:30pm and the main event tips off at 2pm.
Music and sound is presented by Family First Soundsystem and a varied menu of Carribean food will be available from the main restaurant, courtesy of Baxter Storey.
Pre-event ‘Leaders of the New School’ clinics
Young players between the ages of 5 and 16 can take to the hardwood hours before the action begins. Senior coaches will take players through a series of fundamental skills workshops and give kids the chance to interact with some of their role models. BBL professional Ishmael Fontaine, amongst a wealth of BBL stars, will be on hand to inspire the next generation. The first 50 campers will receive a limited edition FamFest t-shirt.
Camp places are free with a valid child ticket however places are limited. Avoid disappointment by booking online today.
This event is not to be missed! Make sure you get down there for what will be awesome vibes all day!