Lily Cormier knows a thing or two about balancing acts.
The softly-spoken eighth-grader can twirl a basketball on her fingertip for a few seconds, a skill that demands lots of practice and intense concentration.
She was just about the only child who could pull it off, out of the 40 or so youths who attended the Knights of Columbus Basketball Free Throw Contest at Redcliff Middle School on Jan. 19.
“We’d like to see more kids participate – they get free pizza,” said organizer Len Limpert. “I can’t tell you why for sure, but kids are apparently less active than in the past. We used to have 75 or so kids here. We’d definitely like to see the numbers increase.”
Limpert said that the annual event, organized out of the Knights of Columbus headquarters in Newhaven, Connecticut, is open to the whole community.
The Truro-area children who took part form just a tiny fraction of the 250,000 youths aged eight to 14 who play every year in countries where the Knights of Columbus has a presence, including Canada, the United States, Mexico, Poland and the Philippines.
“I know it’s great to see kids active in healthy exercise,” said Limpert. “My son was in hockey and my daughter was in basketball, but they were not involved in this.”
Back on the basketball court, Cormier continued practicing her ball spins as well as her shooting skills. The Colchester Christian Academy student appreciated a chance to play basketball, as her school team was recently wound up.
“I’ve come here every year that I was able to,” she said.
The winners of each age group will represent Truro and Colchester County at the provincial championships in April.
Please check back for the tourney’s full results.