UPDATED: Lovelace's plan to open Dugger Community Center for basketball scores points

Monday, March 5, 2012

A proposal to shoot some hoops at the Dugger Community Center scored positive points with the town.

Dugger Town Councilman Lane Lovelace drew applause when he suggested organizing a series of weekly basketball games at the Community Center.

Starting Thursday, March 15 and continuing on March 22 and 29, the center will be open for basketball from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

"Over the course of the next month, I was wondering, if it'd be all right with the board, if I could open up the community center for people to play basketball and get out of the cold weather," Lovelace said.

The first two-hour session was initially slated for 6:30 p.m. Thursday. However, officials learned Wednesday afternoon a gun show held by Chad Reynolds will require the set-up of around 75 tables in the gym, said Clerk-Treasurer Michelle James.

That means this Thursday's out for basketball.

"They didn't think it was going to be a problem, but it was," James said.

While admission's free, donations will be accepted, and a donation can will also be set up to assist tornado victims.

Should basketball in the center continue through April, Lovelace and James must confer on what nights the center's available to allow the basketball games.

"It will probably have to be different days," James said Wednesday, as the center's booked many evenings.

While Councilman Kermit King suggested allowing the community to use the center for free, Lovelace said he'd be willing to pay a little each week to cover utility costs.

"This is for anybody who wants to come out and play basketball," Lovelace said.

The basketball program's not the only effort Lovelace is spearheading to benefit the community.

He's also planning a blood drive at the community center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 14.

That effort's part of an ongoing series of benefits for Sullivan's Miles Thompson, stricken with lymphoid leukemia when he was just a teenager.

Lovelace also intends to organize a Relay for Life team in support of Thompson for later this spring.

The effort's also undertaken in memory of Devon LeDune, who lost her life to the disease.

"We'd like everybody to come out for this," he said. "I don't know if there's anybody in the community who hasn't been affected by cancer."

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