Jr. Celtics Rookie Hoops & Academy back at the Y

Jr. Celtics registration opens at the Y on October 6. First games and practices start the week of December 4.

Jr. Celtics provides an instructional program for children of all ages to learn, stay active and feel connected. This fun-filled, action-packed youth development program for ages 3-14 years old is a great way to learn the game or improve skills.

Jr. Celtics are back the Y with kids basketball programs. COURTESY PHOTO

Nick Harshaw, sport director at the Y said, “We are so excited to get all the kids back in the gym for this incredibly fun basketball program. We are thrilled to have an amazing partnership with the Celtics that enables us to share their basketball expertise with the community through this player development program. This engaging program provides a recreational basketball experience that gives kids the skills they can use on and off the court.”

Jr. Celtic Rookie Hoops This 12-week program for ages 3-5 is a great place for young players to start. It focuses on skills and drills and basic motor functions with an emphasis on listening, discipline, social emotional skills and group play. This is a perfect landing spot for any child’s first basketball experience. Our coaches teach the basics of the game in a fun and engaging way.

Jr. Celtics Academy This 12-week basketball league teaches fundamental basketball skills for ages 6-14. Program highlights include a skills test, Celtics game watch party at the TRACK at New Balance and enhanced combine and evaluation days. Each child receives a custom Jr. Celtics jersey and a strong connection with the Celtics, which helps to set this program apart from others. The emphasis of the league is on a healthy player/coach development based on the Y core values of honesty, respect and caring.

Jr. Celtics Academy is divided into three divisions:

  1. Pro division, level 1 & 2 (ages 6-8), 8-foot hoop
  2. All-star division, level 1 & 2 (ages 9-11), 9-foot hoop
  3. MVP division (ages 12-14), 10-foot hoop

There is a one-hour practice and one-hour game each week.

The Boston Celtics and the Y understand that youth sports experiences can pave the way for children to learn teamwork, leadership, and hard work. Our partnership ensures every child participating in a Jr. Celtics YMCA program will experience the game in a positive way and foster a lifelong love of the game.

Did you know basketball was invented at the YMCA? The very first game of basketball was played on December 21, 1891, in Springfield. The creator was James Naismith, a 30-year-old physical education faculty member at the YMCA International Training School (later to be named Springfield College.) He was tasked with creating a game that could focus young men and be played indoors in the winter.

Naismith knew he wanted the game to be interesting to keep the attention of players and yet easy to play and safe. At the first game, the height of the “hoop” was placed at 10 feet, determined solely by the height of the Y’s indoor running track. The score of the first game was 1-0 as Naismith hadn’t yet thought to cut out the bottoms of the peach baskets. Instead, someone had to climb a ladder to claim the ball from the basket.

The game was a success from the start and word spread. Within a few days, the class was attracting a crowd. Teachers from a nearby girls’ school asked the Y to organize a girls team. In 1936, basketball became an Olympic sport.

Still time to join the Y’s Annual Raise a Racquet squash tournament
Friday, October 13, and Saturday, October 14

This round-robin team tournament raises funds for the Y’s annual campaign which allows the us to provide financial assistance to ensure that every family, regardless of their ability to pay, has access to all Y programs and services. Sponsorship opportunities and $100 per player. For more information, please contact Samantha Gambaccini at gambaccinis@northshoreymca.org. Register HERE.

Brian Flynn, LVO YMCA Exec. Dir.
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