City of Valley expecting 2,500 visitors this weekend for basketball tournament

Published 8:45 pm Wednesday, February 20, 2019

VALLEY — Members of the Valley Community Center are expecting more than typical traffic this Saturday.

This year, the City of Valley is hosting the ARPA District 5 Basketball Tournament. The tournament features children from ages 7-14, with 41 teams participating. The teams are coming from Alabama cities such as Lanett, Opelika, Sylacauga, Montgomery, Alexander City, Phenix-City and Talladega. Saturday will be filled with continuous action, with games being played simultaneously at the community center, Huguley Elementary, Valley High School, Fairfax Elementary and the L.B. Sykes Community Center.

“We’re excited about hosting this event for sure,” Valley Parks and Recreation athletic director Mark Hudmon said. “It brings in a lot of people to the Valley. It’s a lot of work, it’s a lot of planning. We’re running concessions, admissions, we’ve got port supervisors and officials, hospitality rooms.  There’s a lot of planning for this tournament. It’s a lot of stress, but it makes you feel proud once you get it going, get everybody in here and have a successful tournament.”

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The first game is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. EST., while the latest game is scheduled to tip off at 7 p.m. EST.

Hudmon said that while most Valley residents shouldn’t worry about traffic issues with the 2,500 expected visitors, community center members have been warned about both basketball courts being occupied for the entire day, and should also expect more difficulties than usual to park on Saturday.

All of the teams are all-star teams coming out of each department’s league around Alabama. This year, Valley is sending its 12U girls, 12U boys, 10U boys and 7-8 co-ed teams to the tournament.

“I’d like for the community to come out and watch some young kids play basketball,” Hudmon said. “Most people around here will watch television or high school kids play. Now, they get the opportunity to watch some younger kids play. It’s exciting, and it’s fun to watch.”

Admission is $3 for adults and $2 for children 12 years old and younger.