By Mark Lewis
Local Sports Journal

Though just in its third year, the American Youth Basketball Tour’s (AYBT) event in Tipton, IN is quickly becoming an annual tradition.

Small-town Tipton, OH is the scene of an AYBT district event May 10.

Small-town Tipton, OH is the scene of an AYBT district event May 10.

The AYBT’s Tipton Spring Kickoff, which takes place May 10-11, rings in the spring season with a bang. And for the second year in a row, the event shares a date with Mother’s Day. Thus, some teams may play only one day of the tourney.

District Director Josh McFarland marks his fifth year in the AYBT organization, and has directed the Tipton event since its inception.

For McFarland, the event sells itself to parents and coaches, particularly because of AYBT’s emphasis on skill development.

“Playing time is guaranteed, so they know their child will learn and will develop their basketball skill,” says McFarland. “Most of my practices are focused on fundamentals that the kids do not necessarily get to work on during the school season.”

The Spring Kickoff will host both girls’ and boys’ teams, with the boys side ranging from third grade to twelfth grade, while the girls range from fourth through 12th grades.

The event will be held at two locations, at The Cage, 4484 South State Road 19, in Tipton, and at the Carver Community Center, 1030 N. Purdum Rd. in neighboring Kokomo, the site of another AYBT event June 7.

Parents and fans may view the tournament at $6 per day or $9 for a weekend pass.

The town of Tipton also offers some great activities for families traveling to the area.

The Kennedy Family Aquatic Center will be open, with indoor pools available for guests. Of course, this time of year is also great for spending time outdoors in one of Tipton’s beautiful parks.

Indianapolis, which is about a hours drive from Tipton, will be hosting the same weekend as the district tournament the Celebration of Automobiles at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The exhibit, which pays tribute to more than 100 years of history at Indy’s speedway, showcases many of the most historic, rare and unique cars to grace the track from 1920-70. It will also feature hundreds of current and late model cars. To learn more, go to or call 317-492-6780.

The American Youth Basketball Tour is America’s foremost leader in team basketball skills and character development. For more information on AYBT district tournaments and events, head over to

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Categories: Indiana

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