WHEELING, W.VA. – The City of Wheeling’s Parks & Rec Department hopes to expand recreational opportunities at the 36th Street Park via a Bankshot Basketball System.
Director of Parks & Rec Jesse Mestrovic explained that the goal of this project is to improve the park’s accessibility and inclusivity through the installation of such a course that consists of various sized hoops and backboards that are configured at angles and as curves.
The Bankshot system would serve the citizens as a free recreational activity for all ages, skills and mobility, with its flat surface and non-aggressive play, this system is perfect for citizens in wheelchairs and walkersDirector of Parks & Rec Jesse Mestrovic
Mestrovic said the configuration of Bankshot challenges the player to apply critical thinking in addition to the physical performance of shooting a basketball. Shots are taken from various distances for incremental points as players move around the course in a loop.
In the words of Bankshot Sports, ‘participants play alongside, not against, each otherDirector of Parks & Rec Jesse Mestrovic
Noting such a system would improve the 36th Street Park’s accessibility and inclusivity for the 645 children in Ohio County Schools with cognitive and ambulatory difficulties.
The cost of this project is an estimated $75,000 and Mestrovic is hoping to fund it through grants, sponsorships, and community partnerships.
Ritchie Elementary School, Easter Seals of Wheeling and the Augusta Levy Learning Center have already submitted letters of support, but Mestrovic said there are still things members of the public can do: spread the word – this is an opportunity for innovation in the city and the state; write a letter of support – grant writing is helped by letters of recommendation; connect the Parks & Rec department – if individuals are aware of organizations or businesses that would be willing to lend financial support, let the Parks & Rec department know.
All donations can be directed to the Community Foundation of the Ohio Valley, Park Fund; and volunteer – once the surface is ready, the Parks & Rec Department will be in need of painters.