For many years Mexico varsity girls basketball coach Ed Costley has seen what's been seeing what's been taking place at other schools and has had his eye on bringing it home, but that's been more of a plan until this year.
Now the Lady Bulldogs will be a hosting site for Licking Camps June 28-29 and that's mainly based on their experiences from one season to the next attending events at places such as the Lake or Rolla.
"It originally started as a girls camp then they added volleyball and recently they added boys in the Arnold location. I approached Dave Almany, the founder, last summer about the idea of adding Mexico to his list of dates," said Costley. "I felt us having the new YMCA gym and the addition of the middle school gym we were able to host this event and it would limit travel time from gym to gym for those attending."
Also hosting similar events this summer are Rolla June 1-2, 8-9, 14-16 and July 12-14, Branson on June 7-9 and 20-22 and Lake of the Ozarks on June 25-26. The cost for a three-day camp is $395 and a two-day camp is $315, this is the 25th season for Licking Camps and individuals can register online at www.lickingcamps.com.
The format specifically for Mexico will be three to four games on Thursday and two scheduled games on Friday followed by a single elimination tournament starting at noon on day two.
"Traditionally these dates would have anywhere from 35-50 teams attend Junior High and High School from across state and some teams from Illinois, Iowa, Arkansas etc.," Costley said. "My hope to getting this here was to allow people to see our great facilities and community of Mexico, to allow fans of basketball an opportunity to come watch games in that two day period and to allow our boys and girls team the chance to play locally."
These camps began in 1993 in Licking, MO., where Almany was the athletic director, boys basketball coach and principal. That initial year included girls basketball and in 1995 volleyball was added to the format and that's been what they've been offering ever since. In 2006 things were moved to Rolla and renamed, The I-44 Shootout, but the name was restored shortly there after. Details: firstname.lastname@example.org