The return of the Hoop project – Pomeroy Daily Sentinel
GALLIPOLIS – Hundreds of people filled Gallipolis City Park over the weekend enjoying music, food and mainly basketball.
The Hoop Project is an annual event that raises funds to bring revitalization of downtown Gallipolis back to life, but organizers say it’s a weekend of fun and togetherness for everyone, too.
“To get all the kids out and do things, get everyone in town and everyone to come and play basketball to have a good time, great weekend,” said Cody Wimmer, director of The Root . “Food trucks, shirts – everybody sells shirts, a bunch of companies make their names by sponsoring and everything. “
The event was hosted by The Root and the Downtown Revitalization Project (DRP) and has taken place on the third weekend of July since 2013, with the exception of 2020.
“From Robbie [Pugh] has such a large sports facility, he feeds it with all his employees and resources and the DRP helps with all the community aspect of it, ”said Katie Ratliff, DRP member.
The money generated by the event will be donated to the community to help attract businesses and make the region, in general, more accessible to everyone.
“We focused on revitalizing this downtown area, bringing people there and everyone in the county as well,” Ratliff said. “We’re not just trying to help the people of the city, we want it to be fun for everyone. Make it more welcoming and inclusive for the businesses and people who live here.
The tournament is a three-on-three event that features divisions of all ages. Wimmer said the teams came from all over – including Columbus, Cincinnati, Lancaster and even Kentucky – and everyone was welcome.
“I’ve played there for the last two years and it’s just fun playing outside and having a different atmosphere to play,” said Larissa McDaniel, a rookie from Belpre, Ohio.
McDaniel brought her friend, Hayleigh Chigester, an eighth-grader from Marietta, to play this year.
The girls had no idea the tournament money had returned to the community, but Chigester said she thought it was a great way to give back while having fun.
The event may be aimed at giving back to the community and providing a fun event, but Wimmer said he believes the way people come together is what makes it special.
“I think the most important thing is for everyone to come out,” Wimmer said. “All of the companies came in to help sponsor, all of the volunteers came out to help volunteer – the scorers, the officials and anyone who helped out a little – we appreciate everyone, that’s great.”
Last year, the event was canceled due to the coronavirus, making this year even more important for the community, Wimmer said.
“Kind of like everyone in the community is coming together and having fun, especially after the year we had last year, when it comes to COVID and everything,” Wimmer said of the event. 2021. “Just get everyone out of the house, get everyone together, something for the kids to do, something for everyone to come out and have fun.”
Ratliff said the hope of the event and the revitalization project is not only to give everyone something fun to do, but to make everyone proud of where they live.
“We want to make this city center where people want to come and visit here, want to stay here, want to spend the night and have events here, and eat here and shop here and make it a really fun place,” Ratliff mentioned. . “We just want people to be happy where they live.”
The event is mainly promoted through social media. While starting on the small side, he only grew more over the seven years of his outfit.
“The first year they did it they only had about 50 teams, this year I think we had some, I mean there are 106 teams altogether or something like that. “said Wimmer. “I know that in the past it is [Pugh] had like 180 teams. It started small, but over the years it just got bigger and everybody showed tremendous support and everything. “
Ratliff said they always welcome volunteers for events like this or the DRP to help make things even better.
“We like to say, love where you live,” Ratliff said.
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The Hoop Project returned to Gallipolis this weekend, bringing together basketball players of all ages.
Young basketball players participate in the Hoop Project.
Hundreds of people gathered in Gallipolis this weekend for the return of The Hoop Project.
Brittany Hively is a freelance writer and graduate of Marshall University, with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and journalism.