GRAND ISLAND, N.Y. (WIVB) — A popular three-on-three basketball tournament could finally,officially, have its new home. Gus Macker organizers say they’ve met all of the Grand Island town board’s conditions so the competition should be good to go.
“It is such a strong event,” says Corey Mcgowan, the organizer. “It has been over 20 years. You don’t get to 20 years without being something special. It going away wasn’t an option so we had to find a solution to make it work.”
That solution is Grand Island Boulevard. The roadway will turn into basketball courts as an anticipated 500 teams hit the streets for the traditional tournament.
“The security concerns, in a sense, are based on Grand Island just not typically having this grand of an event; this big of a recognition,” says Mcgowan. “There are concerns for traffic but this will be good for us.”
Business owners are agreeing with Mcgowan.
“I’m excited,” says Shannon Zaccaria, the owner of Grand Island Popular Graphics. “It’ll be good for businesses to greet people when they come and sell some items to them. Normally some businesses might close down when there is that much traffic but it will be an upscale opportunity for them to make extra money.”
“I’m on the corner of the event and for me not to get on board is a bad business choice,” says Jonathan Bondi who owns Baked Cupcakery. “There are going to be a lot of people on the island that weekend and I want to get as many as I can through the door.”
The organizers expect upwards of 3,000 to come to the island for the tournament.
“It’s bringing more exposure and visibility here,” says Mcgowan. “It’s really trying to eliminate that bridge myth that these bridges prohibit people from getting here but once they see what we have to offer, we expect them to come back again and again.”
Right now, around 200 teams are registered. Registration is open until August 17th. You can register here.
The tournament is August 29 to 30.