NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced Thursday that the city's latest "NOLA for Life" basketball season was the most highly attended season since the program began in 2012.
The goal of the program is to provide safe recreational opportunities in crime hot spots for young men through mentors, support and basketball. This season's winners, OTB 500, won the most 5-on-5 NCAA-type tournaments and received a $1,000 grand prize.
"I am proud of this record-breaking Midnight Basketball season and the overall progress that we have made to create opportunities for young people in our city," said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. "Season eleven's success would not have been possible without the commitment of our strong community partners and sponsors Nike, Domino's Pizza and the New Orleans Pelicans."
Season eleven had a total of 760 players and 450 spectators, making it the highest-attended season of NOLA FOR LIFE Midnight Basketball. Throughout the season, various community and national service providers offered mentoring and opportunities for participants to learn about and register for skills training.
The season featured new speakers including U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Louisiana Kenneth Polite, NOPD Superintendent Chief Michael Harrison, and previous Midnight Basketball winners / participants and local educator Gian Smith.
The newly opened Rosenwald Recreation Center (1120 S. Broad St.) in the B.W. Cooper neighborhood hosted the season.