Kids to host basketball tournament for kids’ cancer research

Micah Bernstein
Micah Bernstein, who is an inspirational cancer warrior/survivor. Picasa

Sixth grader Zachary Robinson wanted to do something to help kids battling cancer. He was particularly driven to help because a family friend – Micah Bernstein – was a child who has been in treatment for cancer for most of his life. Zachary felt the best thing to do was raise money for kids’ cancer research.

Zachary started working on a fundraising idea based on one of his favorite sports: basketball. His energy was infectious, and soon his sister and three friends from school joined him in creating “Hoops for Lives,” a 3-on-3 basketball tournament just for kids.

Zachary and the Hoops for Lives planning team – Julia Maurer, Reese and Spencer Reckles, and Ellery Robinson – are working hard to bring this event to life. Through the support of the local community, this group of philanthropic kids have secured the donation of the basketball court at The Bay Club for the tournament. Courtney Clements from the WNBA, and a CV Bulldogs coach, will be the guest of honor. They have worked with Mastersports, San Diego Sol, the RB Youth Basketball League, CV Bulldogs, Indihoops and other basketball clubs, as well as local elementary, middle schools and high schools to help get the word out to the community. Businesses have donated gifts for a great silent auction and they’ve received donations from Probar, 2Toms, Suja and the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club.

Kids fight
Kids helping fight kids' cancer: (L to R) Zachary Robinson, Reese Reckles, Julia Maurer, Ellery Robinson, Spencer Reckles Courtesy

Attendees and participants alike can expect a fun, family-friendly afternoon at The Bay Club with a live DJ, photo booth, carnival games and more. At the suggestion of Micah’s family, Hoops for Lives will benefit Beat Nb, a national nonprofit focused on beating neuroblastoma and other childhood cancers through funding innovative research and clinical trials that are available to kids fighting cancer right here at Rady’s Children’s Hospital and over 30 other sites nationwide. One-hundred percent of event proceeds will be contributed to Beat Nb, including registrations, silent auction, slime sales, food sales by the kids and t-shirt profits!

Micah Bernstein of Carlsbad was diagnosed with neuroblastoma when he was just 15 months old. He underwent chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and MIBG therapy over the next six months, only to find that the disease had come back one week before his end-of-treatment exam. Micah resumed chemo and radiation, and treated the new disease, but relapsed again within six months. Micah’s family and doctors pursued another course of treatment and Micah was finally clear of disease – more than two years after having been originally diagnosed. Because of the aggressive nature of neuroblastoma, the Bernstein’s have kept Micah, now 7, on maintenance therapies, including DFMO, a clinical trial funded by Beat Nb.

If you’d like to support this group of kids in their efforts to help fight kids’ cancer, consider signing up to play in the tournament, try your luck with free-throws, or volunteer at the event. The 3-on-3 tourney is divided into brackets for kids ages 7-9, 10-12 and 13-15 years old. The free-throw contest is open to all ages.

Hoops for Lives will be held at The Bay Club, 12000 Carmel Country Rd, San Diego, CA 92130 on Sunday, June 24, from 3-7 p.m. Get your team together, register, make a donation or volunteer at