The owners of the John W. Engeman Theater are working with a Northport High School alumni group to fix up the basketball court in the village.
Working with the Northport High School 1995 Long Island Champion Boys Basketball Team, Kevin O’Neill and Rich Dolce have pledged a $7,000 donation through the GoFundMe campaign that the team has set up. The fund is looking to raise $50,000.
All proceeds from ticket sales to the Sept. 16 and Sept. 17 performances of Smokey Joes Cafe will be donated toward the project goal of $50,000.
“By working with the Northport basketball team, we are helping children and families have increased access to healthier lifestyles as well as safe, inclusive and innovative play opportunities for years to come,” O’Neill said.
“What’s been so inspiring is how many former classmates who are now parents have contributed to the initiative. As parents we have a unique perspective on how important a role sports play in building confidence and character. Kevin & Rich are parents too and have seen the benefits of sports on their own kids. They recognize that something as seemingly simple as a basketball court can have a profound impact on young people as they develop,” said Doug Trani and Chris Wiebke, Northport Class of 1995, who are leading the effort.
“Basketball has had a profound impact on our lives, and it all stems from playing in our local parks here in Northport. Providing kids and teens the chance to fall in love with the game we did is an opportunity we didn’t want to pass up,” Trani said.