NORWICH – The 2022 Gus Macker Tournament kicks off Saturday and Sunday for its 25th anniversary. 210 teams are ready to play at Macker’s new location at the Norwich middle and high school.
Norwich is one of the thriving New York tournaments this year as around the state, many cities had to cancel due to the decrease of participation. YMCA Sports Coordinator Tom Revoir, along with Executive Director Jamey Mullen, were pleased to reach 200 teams to match first year’s numbers from 1996, but even happier advancing with the final 210.
With 210 teams, there will be 22 courts taking over the NHS gymnasium parking lot. Registration will be inside the gymnasium starting tonight from 4 to 7 p.m. as well as Saturday morning starting at 7 a.m until 11 a.m.
Parking is available in the following lots; Golden Artists on Hale Street and Midland Drive, the Norwich Little League field parking lot off of Hale Street, the Norwich High School Baseball field parking lot off of Marconi Ave and Midland, Achieve (former CWS) Parking Lot on Midland Drive and East Main Street, Chenango County Fairgrounds by the Norwich Football field and walk up Marconi Ave. Volunteers are asked to park behind the middle school.
Concessions will open tonight at 5 p.m. and be available all weekend with food vendors lined up in a food truck rodeo with to-go foods. Macker is also excited to introduce Kandi’s Kitchen to the vendor lineup this year. The booths can be found within the middle and high school bus circle.
Midland Drive between the district office and the high school will be closed to all vehicle traffic beginning Friday July 8th at 8 a.m. until Sunday evening at approximately 7 p.m. An evening curfew of 10 p.m. will also be enforced all weekend at the site.
The Tournament is excited to welcome back “Gus Macker” himself, Scott McNeal all the way from Michigan and his committee will kick off the morning starting at 8 a.m. Saturday. Mayor Brian Doliver will shoot the “Do or Die Shot” to conclude opening ceremonies. Games officially begin at 9 a.m.
With the 25th anniversary, it will be exciting to see if the YMCA committee has come up with anything special this year, even with a tight budget. But, this year is just about having the tournament back and seeing everyone’s smiling faces again as they share the love of basketball.
“Norwich is one of the best places to experience the tournament because it gives off a special community feel where the love for Macker is evident to everyone, especially the players,” Scott McNeal said. “To the players, Macker is more to them than just a basketball tournament.”
Good luck to all the participants.
Be sure to pick up a copy of the 2022 special Evening Sun edition, “The Gusette”, which will be available at the Gus Macker registration area in the Norwich High School, the Norwich Family YMCA, Byrne Dairy, Grand Union, Nina's Pizzeria, Tex Mex Express, Park Place Sports Bar and Grill, and many other locations.