Mike Burdett, founder of the Edmonds Sports Academy, can barely contain his excitement when he talks about what Edmonds has in store next week for the 600 youth basketball players and hundreds of fans arriving for the second annual Holiday Hoopfest Monday-Wednesday.
When Burdett decided to take on organizing the tournament for 5th-8th grade boys and girls (the first one in 2010 was run by Edmonds-Woodway High School girls basketball coach Duane Hodges), he went beyond the basics of scheduling teams and organizing brackets. His passion as a shameless booster of Edmonds and the Edmonds business community kicked in, and he started pounding the pavement, figuring out ways the businesses could benefit directly from the influx of kids and adults
“The idea is to tie our sports events to the local community,” said Burdett, a former financial planner and lifetime Edmonds resident who founded the Edmonds Sports Academy last summer as the culmination of a long-time dream. The Academy initially opened at the Edmonds Center for the Arts gymnasium, a facility no longer available to Burdett, but he has secured time for the academy at two other locations — the Church of God gym on 220th Street Southwest and Cedar Park Christian School in Mountlake Terrace. Next week’s tournament will be played at those two locations, plus Edmonds-Woodway High School.
The tournament will run from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. each day, and all proceeds from team entry fees and admission (there’s a discount for families) will benefit the E-W girls basketball team. In addition, one player chosen at random from each team will receive free dinner at Hamburger Harry’s in downtown Edmonds while all players (and their families) will receive discounts at a variety of participating Edmonds and Mountlake Terrace businesses, including Revelations Yogurt, Taki Tiki, Dimitri’s, The Loft, Mazatlan, the Red Onion, Evviva Pizza, Starbucks and Portofino’s.