Muskegon Area Sports Hall of Fame
Holiday Basketball Classic
|This annual fundraiser has returned over $110,000 to schools in the Greater Muskegon area since its start in 2002.|
December of 2002, the Hall of Fame made the jump into tournament sponsorship with the launch of a high
Featuring four schools from the Greater Muskegon area, the goal was to
provide sports entertainment over the Christmas break, and to
create a new fundraising opportunity for the schools that
participate in the event.
Christened the Hall of Fame Basketball Classic, proceeds from the contests are split five ways between the four schools and the Hall of Fame. The format includes varsity, junior varsity and freshmen contests played over two consecutive days at different venues around town.
Varsity games were hosted at Mona Shores High School that first year, and included contests between North Muskegon, West Michigan Christian, Mona Shores and Muskegon Heights spread over two consecutive days. Featuring NCAA Division 1 recruits Drew Naymick of North Muskegon (Michigan State), and Eddie Spencer of Muskegon Heights (Central Michigan), the success of the concept was quickly apparent. Sellout crowds meant a new home for the varsity contests in year two.
The Classic was moved to the spacious facility at Reeths-Puffer High School. With Shelby replacing North Muskegon, the event again met with tremendous success. A Saturday evening match-up between Muskegon and Muskegon Heights was a huge hit, attracting 3,400 spectators.
Year three allowed Reeths-Puffer the opportunity to join in the fun, as the Rockets replaced Mona Shores in the line-up. Grand Haven joined the mix in 2005, while Fremont rotated in last season to bring the total number of participants to nine schools.
Today, the Hall of Fame Classic ranks among the longest-running Christmas tournaments in the state of Michigan. Thanks to an outstanding group of volunteers the help stage the games the popularity of the event, the Classic has been able to return well over $110,000 to help area athletic programs. A girls bracket was added to the tournament in 2010
. “We see this as a great opportunity for basketball in the area,” Hall of Fame President Gene Young said. “This will be a showcase for the girls, the same as it has been for the boys.”
Sports Hall of Fame Classic