Oklahoma City Thunder and YMCA Expands Youth Basketball League to 25 YMCA Branches

Branches will serve over 13,000 athletes in 21 different communities across Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Thursday, Aug. 8, 2019 – The Oklahoma City Thunder and the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City announced that the YMCA Thunder Basketball League has now expanded to 25 YMCA branches as a part of its year two expansion. Through this expansion, the YMCA branches will cater to 13,000 athletes in 21 different communities across Oklahoma. While the YMCA will remain the sole operator of the league, the Thunder will provide youth athlete and coach development resources along with both the Thunder and YMCA to rebrand league jerseys to reflect the ongoing partnership.

“Through this partnership, children across the state will now have opportunities not previously available to them through league play, high level volunteer coaches training and OKC Thunder activities year round,” said Chris Berry, Edmond District Executive Director, YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City. “We are grateful for the partnership between our two organizations and look forward to growing the game across Oklahoma.”

The YMCA Thunder Basketball League is a youth league partnership between the Thunder and statewide YMCA branches. During the 2018-19 season, a pilot program of the league was operated within all Oklahoma City and Cleveland County YMCA locations. In its inaugural season, the league had more than 5,700 participants, 1,200 volunteer coaches participating in the program, more than 600 teams being formed through the league, a total of 71 Oklahoma communities being served and inspired a 2.3% increase in participation across all YMCA locations.

“By expanding the league with our partners at the YMCA to further branches across the state, we are able to help foster a love for the game at a young age, and impact more youth through a developmental platform,” said Michelle Matthews, manager of Thunder Youth Basketball. “We are excited for the upcoming season and look forward to seeing athletes of all skill levels take the court in the coming months.”

As a part of the expansion, the Thunder will continue to provide exclusive clinics for YMCA volunteer coaches prior to the upcoming winter season. Volunteer coaches will also have access to coaching materials such as a basketball drills and off-court character programing.

The following YMCA branches will take part in the this year’s YMCA Thunder Basketball League:

LOCATION CITY
Chickasha Area YMCA Chickasha, OK
Earlywine Park YMCA Oklahoma City, OK
Mitch Park YMCA Edmond, OK
Rankin YMCA Edmond, OK
Edward L. Gaylord Downtown YMCA Oklahoma City, OK
Guthrie YMCA Guthrie, OK
Midwest City YMCA Midwest City, OK
North Side YMCA Oklahoma City, OK
Bethany YMCA Bethany, OK
Stillwater YMCA Stillwater, OK
Cleveland County Family YMCA Norman, OK
Family YMCA of Bartlesville Bartlesville, OK
Denny Price Family YMCA Enid, OK
Ardmore Family YMCA Ardmore, OK
Shawnee Family YMCA Shawnee, OK
Great Plains Family YMCA Weatherford, OK
Lawton Family YMCA Lawton, OK
YMCA of Greater Tulsa Tulsa, OK
W.L. Hutcherson Branch YMCA Tulsa, OK
Tandy Family YMCA Tulsa, OK
R.C. Dickenson Family YMCA Broken Arrow, OK
Owasso Family YMCA Owasso, OK
Daily Family YMCA of Bixby Bixby, OK
Okmulgee County Family YMCA Okmulgee, OK
Rockwell Plaza YMCA Oklahoma City, OK

ABOUT THUNDER YOUTH BASKETBALL
Thunder Youth Basketball seeks to provide every participant with quality instruction, with a focus on defined fundamentals: instilling the importance of teamwork, creating a positive learning environment and increasing self-confidence to encourage hard work, focus and persistence. Through online and in-person instruction, the Thunder seeks to inspire a love for the game that creates motivation for continued play among youth.

ABOUT THE YMCA
The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the Oklahoma City Metro, 16 Ys engage more than 160,000 men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities across the country, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change.

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