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Blood drive an addition to youth hoops tourney for 12 Oaks Foundation

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Updated: April 19, 2013 2:20AM



Just in time for March Madness, the 12 Oaks Foundation will host its third annual Hoops for Hope 3-on-3 basketball tourney on March 16-17 at Grayslake North High School.

Open to all players from fourth-graders through adults, the event raises funds to help children in families coping with cancer and financial hardships.

New this year, the friendly competition at Hoops for Hope will also bring about some real bloodshed — off the court, that is.

The organizers have teamed up with LifeSource to host a Matt Hupp Memorial Blood Drive on-site during the first day of the tournament, March 16, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

To donate blood, fans and players age 16-older should call (877) 543-3768 to schedule an appointment, and bring two forms of identification to the tournament.

The blood drive is named after the oldest son of Steve and Julie Hupp, the founders of 12 Oaks. Matt Hupp lost his battle with a rare form of cancer called Birkitt’s Lymphoma in 2009, at age 13. .

After witnessing Matt’s fight against cancer, the Hupp family decided to create a foundation that could assist other families suffering under similar circumstances.

After witnessing Matt’s fight against cancer, the Hupp family decided to create a foundation that could assist other families suffering under similar circumstances.

Funds raised through Hoops for Hope go to help cover fees for sports and other activities for children in families dealing with a long-term illness.

The name 12 Oaks comes from the number Matt always chose for his jersey, regardless what sport he was playing. Steve Hupp said he liked the idea of an oak because it’s the Illinois state tree, and like Matt’s memory, strong and enduring.

The entry fee is $35 for youths ($40 after March 1) and $40 for adults..

To register or for more details including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.12oaksfoundation.org.



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