The sixth annual donkey basketball game held at North Stokes High School on Friday evening drew a crowd of around 450 people, said organizer Jeff Whitaker.
“It’s a good way to come together and just laugh for a little while. People look forward to this every year. It’s a great way to support the fire department and we’re always trying to give back to the community,” he said.
The popular fundraiser included familiar faces from the fire department such as Josh Manual, Logan Whitaker, Dana Marshall and Jamie Hicks and a community team made up of Susan Richards, Tim Fox, Jimmy Brown and Shawn Burrow. Whitaker said others who helped make the event a success were Ethan Plasters, Mckayla Handy, Matthew Hayden and Chandler Richards.
The rules were explained that players could only move around the court if they had their donkey with them and they could only shoot if they were mounted on their donkey. But playing anything resembling an actual game while following those rules turned out to be nearly impossible and very funny to spectators.
The event raised nearly $700 to help women battling breast cancer in Stokes County and $863 towards funding the local junior firefighter program.
“We had a 50/50 drawing and winner Dallas McGumery donated his portion of the money back. It’ll go towards breast cancer and we really appreciated that,” Whitaker said.
Whitaker helps oversee the junior firefighter program and said it’s an active group made up of 13 to 18-year-olds preparing to be firemen in the future.
While the juniors are limited to what they can do, the teenagers participate in training so if they choose to come on with the department at 18, most already have tremendous knowledge of the position.
“It prepares them. It also keeps them out of trouble and their grades up.”
Whitaker was pleased with Friday’s event and thanked the community for their support.
“We’re very appreciative of Fulp’s Wrecker Service and Hazmat Clean-Up for their sponsorship and Rodney Booth of WKTE who emceed for us. We’re already preparing for next year. We’re scheduled to have our seventh annual donkey basketball game March 1, 2019.”
Amanda Dodson may be reached at 336-813-2426.