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APD to play CMCC Mustangs in “Jam the Gym”

The men’s varsity basketball team from Central Maine Community College will face a somewhat unusual opponent when they play the Auburn Police Department All-Stars for local bragging rights in a “Jam the Gym” fundraising event on Tuesday, November 18 at 7 p.m. Proceeds from this all-in-fun event will benefit the Auburn Police Activities League (PAL).

This unusual CMCC foe will consist of APD officers of every rank and skill level. “We are pretty confident that we will give them some good competition,” said Chief Phil Crowell. “They may be younger and faster than we are, but don’t count us out – our guys have ‘game.’ Either way, it’s going to be a great event!”

“Our goal is to pack the gym with folks who want to have some fun,” said CMCC Athletic Director and men’s basketball coach David Gonyea. Gonyea serves on the PAL Board of Directors and had the idea for “Jam the Gym.”

“The boys are thrilled to host the APD All-Stars,” Gonyea continued. “We know how badly the PD wants to teach our kids a lesson, but I hope they have been running and practicing daily to prepare! Seriously, though, college players love games like this one, because anything we can do to help the PAL Center is a positive. Many of our students volunteer at the PAL Center, so they are invested in the program and have a real bond with the kids there.”

Auburn PAL is a non-profit organization that provides after-school and summer programs for Auburn youth who live in the city’s highest-crime, lowest-income neighborhood. Staff, officers and community volunteers mentor kids at the Auburn PAL Center, which opened a year and half ago.

“We took a look at our calls for service, and 25% of them were happening within a 1?2-mile radius of where the PAL Center is located,” said Crowell. “At PAL, these kids now have a safe place to spend some time, get help with homework, have a nutritious snack, play sports and have a great time.”

The event will take place in the CMMC gymnasium. Tickets are $3 each or four for $10. They can be purchased at the Auburn Police Department (60 Court Street), the CMCC Bookstore, or at Republic Jewelry & Collectibles (212 Center Street). For more information or to sponsor the event, contact the APD’s Liz Allen at 333-6650 x2070 or LAllen@auburnmaine.gov.

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