If your sides are still aching from laughing, you must have been at Grundy High School on Friday night enjoying the hilarious comedy routines of the internationally acclaimed Harlem Ambassadors basketball team.
Sponsored by the Grundy County Rotary Club, the event was the finale of a very successful three-day visit from the team to our county. Over 1,500 people turned out to delight in the Ambassador’s unique brand of Harlem-style basketball, featuring high-flying slam-dunks, unique ball-handling tricks and hilarious comedy routines.
The Harlem Ambassadors began their local tour on Wednesday with school assemblies at North, Coalmont, Monteagle, and Tracy City elementary schools. On Thursday, the team visited and performed at the elementary schools in Pelham, Swiss, and Palmer.
Within moments of opening their programs at all seven schools the students were cheering wildly as the players generated non-stop laughs and delivered a positive message for the kids. Rotary Club member Kelly Foutch said, “They really get the message across that it is important to stay in school, stay off drugs and get along with others.”
Students and families were not the only people at the game enjoying a new experience. Grundy County fielded a new celebrity team of our own. At the invitation of the Harlem Ambassadors, the Grundy County All-Stars hit the court for some antics of their own. The All-Stars team was made up of players sponsored by local businesses, schools, political campaigns and organizations.
According to Jim Waller, another Rotary club member, all profits from the game will be used to fund the coming year’s Rotary community service projects such as the Third and Ninth Grades Free Dictionary Program.
Other projects to benefit from the event include “Cleaner Greener Grundy” which is aimed at cleaning up the county and “Don’t Meth With Us” an innovative drug prevention program.
Rotary will also use part of the profits to continue to fund its highly successful “GCHS Interact Club” in which young people learn how they can contribute to the community. Still other beneficiaries include the “Interact Club Leadership Academy” and Rotary’s annual scholarship program that helps students in need of higher education assistance. “The Grundy County Rotary Club offers our heartfelt thanks to the Harlem Ambassadors as well as our sponsors, the All-Stars players and everyone who attended the game,” said Waller. Grundy County All-Stars: Julie Davis, Seth Layne, Jamie Hill, Russell Ladd, Tonya Garner, John Ross Jones, Trey Anderson, Eric Barks, Kasey Woodlee, Willie Childers, Tyler McCullough, Crais Partin, Kevin Butner, John Hargis, Curt Oglesby.