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Local celebrities to play in Habitat basketball game

By Paul Huggins 340-2395

Local athletes, celebrities and church leaders will test their basketball skills and humility Feb. 17 as they take on the Harlem Ambassadors in a charity game.

The event is a fundraiser for Habitat for Humanity and stars Lade Majic, Ambassador player and coach, and the only woman to play both roles for a men's pro basketball team.

This is the fourth straight year for the Ambassadors to challenge Decatur teams. Nucor, BP and Compass Bank are event sponsors.

Like the longer-established Harlem Globetrotters, the Ambassadors mix dazzling ball handling with comedic routines designed to entertain children and families.

Unlike the Globetrotters, the Ambassadors don't travel with a pre-selected opponent or follow a choreographed routine.

They play local celebrities and all-stars, making every show different and spontaneous.

The Ambassadors will play against two local teams, facing one for one half and the other in the second half.

The local all-star team consists of state Sen. Arthur Orr, R-Decatur; John Hannah, former All-American football player at Alabama and NFL Hall of Famer; MoJo, WZYP morning radio show host; Joe Hunk, WZYP radio personality; Brandon Watkins, Emanuel Church youth pastor; Bob Schneider, BP representative; Larry Franks, Decatur Baptist Church youth pastor; Aaron Scheer, Decatur Baptist Church children's pastor; and Terry Wheatley, basketball enthusiast.

The local competitive team consists of Chad Mask, Jona Harr, Horace Plemons, Earnest Lee, Rojohn Mims, Lloyd Trotter, Joseph Tucker, Kenneth Brackins, Kent Simmons and Caster Green. The latter two represent Nucor.

Previous games packed the Calhoun Community College and Austin High School gyms, respectively, and organizers advise buying advance tickets to ensure entry.

The game will be at 6 p.m. at Calhoun's Kelly Gymnasium. Advance student tickets are
$5, and adult tickets are $7. Tickets at the door will cost $2
more. Children 4 and under get in free.

Advance tickets are available now in Decatur at Colonial Mall, Virginia Woodall Sports and the Habitat Home Improvement Outlet at 620 Wilson St. N.E.

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