BY MARTHA DIX —
Hoops for Harris, a three-on-three basketball tournament fundraiser for the Mark Harris Family Fund organized by student council, took place in the SHS area on April 9.
“He loved basketball, the Shorewood community and Shorewood athletics, so we thought a three-on-three tournament would be a good way to honor his legacy and bring together Shorewood families in a way he would have appreciated,” said Olivia Holbrook, senior and student council president.
This is the second year the tournament, which was created last year to honor Mark Harris — who was the principal at SIS, and before that, vice principal at SHS — took place.
The tournament was divided into three divisions: a first through third grade division, a fourth through sixth grade division and a middle school, high school and adult combined division.
Each division played for two hours. There were 115 participants total, and the event raised about $1400, roughly $500 more than last year.
“It was a really good event but we know about some changes that we could make,” Holbrook said.
Student council tried to get younger children to participate in this year’s event because last year’s had a lack of elementary school children.
“We did parent newsletters, Thursday folders at the elementary schools; we had posters in places where parents would be, to target that group of people,” Holbrook said.
This year’s event was held in the arena, while last year’s was held in both the North Gym and at SIS, due to scheduling conflicts.
The organization was also different this year. “It was much more organized than last year,” said Megan Eimers, senior who played in the tournament and refereed the younger divisions.
Recently, the arena was re-floored and dedicated to Harris. The Hoops for Harris event was the first time the floor had been played on.
“It was a way to inaugurate the gym,” Holbrook said. The floor has a special plank on it with the number 33, in honor of Harris. According to Eimers, Harris’ children had the opportunity to write a message to their dad underneath the plank before it was installed.
Jeff Zimpel, teacher, participated in the event both years it has ran. The event is very important to him. “When I was a new teacher [Harris] invited me to participate with some teachers and staff on Saturday mornings … to play basketball and he really pushed me to participate and I thought it would be a great way to start knowing people here,” Zimpel said. “I felt very much welcomed by him.”
Zimpel plans to participate in Hoops for Harris again in the future. Both Eimers and Zimpel enjoyed being able to play against a diverse group of teams.
“I hope the Mark Harris three-on-three tournament continues … far into the future … and that it becomes a bigger and bigger event each year,” Zimpel said.