The Times archive photo by Andy Duvall

Past action shows kids playing – they get that chance because of the hard work of many volunteers and supporters, including the Kiwanians and their pancake breakfast that is Saturday.
The Times archive photo by Andy Duvall Past action shows kids playing – they get that chance because of the hard work of many volunteers and supporters, including the Kiwanians and their pancake breakfast that is Saturday.
If you want to see some good, competitive basketball, stop in at the Boys & Girls Club of Noblesville most any weeknight.
It’s that time of year, when the Club’s youth basketball program is in full swing, with games four nights a week, Monday through Thursday.
This year, there are nearly 500 kids from kindergarten through Grade 12 in the youth basketball league program.
In basketball, there are 60 teams playing weekly at the Club’s Community Center. Each of the teams is sponsored by a local business with that business name printed on the back of the jerseys.
The Times newspaper this season sponsors a team made up of third- and fourth-grade boys, whose games are Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. or later. Read more about The Times’ team in an upcoming edition.
“We receive constant support from local businesses,” said Tony Eslamirad, the Club’s sports director. The Club has provided opportunities for youth since 1951 and annually serves more than 2,000 members kindergarten through Grade 12.
Games continue weekly through the week of March 9, with the Club’s playoffs, the 40th annual Basketball Spectacular on March 14 at Noblesville High School. The public is welcome to attend games and the Spectacular, which begins at 9 a.m.and usually runs until about 3:30 p.m., with an awards ceremony sometime in between.
The Club’s winter league players are currently gearing up for their annual pancake breakfast and picture day this Saturday. It’s 8 a.m. to noon at the Club Community Center, 150 N. 17th St., Noblesville.
“It’s a great event where the Noblesville Sunrisers Kiwanis comes in early to volunteer their time to get everything prepared for the breakfast, which is provided by Sysco. Pairing it with Picture Day, and now games within our league, we try and make it a full morning of fun,” Eslamirad said.
Members of Kiwanis Clubs of Noblesville prepare the breakfast that annually attracts more than 1,000 people and raises money to benefit the Club’s sports programming. (The Sunrisers Kiwanis Club supports important community needs, like the Boys & Girls Club pancake breakfast each February, Noblesville Elementary Football League breakfast each August and the Noblesville Fun Run each May. The 44-year-old club meets at 7 a.m. Tuesdays at Ginger’s Cafe, in the Navy Room, and invites new members.)
“The pancake breakfast is our biggest fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club of Noblesville’s recreational sports program,” Eslamirad said. “We use the money that is raised to buy new equipment, maintain our current equipment and provide scholarships to those in need.”
He said, “Our goal each year is to raise $5,000.”
Tickets for Saturday’s breakfast are $5, available from any youth winter basketball players. And I encourage anybody who wants to attend or to support the Club to buy their tickets from one of the players, rather than the Club or at the door. That’s because it’s a competition. Players are competing, off the court, to sell the most number of pancake breakfast tickets. The top boy and girl who sell the most number of tickets will win a gift card to Dick’s Sporting Goods, and the team that sells the most number of tickets will win a limousine ride to an Indiana Pacers home game.
My daughter played seasons, then skipped last season since she made the Noblesville East Middle School seventh-grade girls team, then returned this season, for her fourth season of playing in the Club’s winter basketball youth league. During her first three seasons, she competed and sold the most tickets to a Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast and won the limousine ride to a Pacers game for her team. Last year, even though she didn’t play, she wanted to sell tickets and support the club.
To those folks who have bought tickets from us, we thank you.
My daughter is selling breakfast tickets all week through Friday. So if anyone would like to buy tickets from her and support the Club, we have tickets available for you again this year.
Also, mark your calendars for Feb. 17, when all Hamilton County teens are invited to compete in a free All Star Basketball Contest, with prizes, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Community Center. Also, save the date of the evening of March 14 for the Boys & Girls Club of Noblesville Auxiliary Auction at Harbor Trees Golf & Beach Club, benefiting the Club. And the Boys & Girls Club’s annual Darlington Bed Race will be on Friday, June 5.

-Contact Betsy Reason at betsy@thetimes24-7.com.