Oasis All-Star Shrine Classic moves to Mooresville
by Staff Writer
MOORESVILLE – Mooresville has landed an all-star football game.
The top high school seniors from North Carolina independent schools will face those from South Carolina in the Oasis All-Star Shrine Classic at Mooresville High School on Nov. 24.
It will culminate a week of activities and a parade surrounding the game, which is played to raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children.
The game has been played the past five years at various locations in Charlotte and in Salisbury the two years before that. Officials from the Shriners and Mooresville said at a Tuesday, May 15, press conference that they hope the all-star game makes Mooresville its permanent home.
“I know Mooresville was a football town, and I knew these folks would feel welcome when they came here,” said H. Mike Cook, the Oasis Shriners’ potentate and a Mooresville native. “People are really excited about us being here. I’m excited that they have a great place to come to. If this becomes a successful project, and with the enthusiasm we have in Mooresville, we would want this to become the home for this game.”
Each team’s coaching staff will pick 36 players. Four lake-area players participated last year – Davidson Day’s Tre Hunt and SouthLake Christian’s Taylor Jurney, Troy Lowden and Scott Richardson.
The players will arrive the Sunday before the game, said Charlie Walker, the Oasis Shriners athletic director. They will visit a Shriners Hospital for Children on Monday and have other civic and fun activities between practices.
Shriners Hospitals for Children have been serving children since 1922, and this year will release its millionth patient, Cook said. They specialize in orthopedics, burn treatment and cleft lip and palate correction.
“There are so many children we’ve helped defy the odds,” Cook said. “How do we do that? By having projects like this Oasis All-Star Classic, which is a fundraiser for Shriners Hospitals for Children. We’re excited we’re going to be able to help another child defy the odds through the support of the town of Mooresville and the people who will attend this ballgame. This is a touchdown for us.”
Kirk Ballard of the Mooresville Chamber of Commerce credited several organizations for helping land the all-star event, including the town, the Mooresville Graded School District, the Mooresville Downtown Commission and the Mooresville Convention and Visitors Bureau.
“It will be a boom and a boost for our community to have this much activity here,” Ballard said. “But it’s especially pleasing for us because of the good work the Shriners do. They have 22 different hospitals (nationwide) and 127,000 patients, young children who are getting care at no cost. It’s good for our community, but it’s also a great and outstanding cause.”
Walker said the players will be selected in mid-October, with a limit of three per school.
“I think the community will find that these are some well-mannered kids,” Walker said. “They’ll be glad to be here.”