This Friday, February 1, North Shore Country Day School’s boys’ JV and Varsity basketball teams are supporting Alzheimer’s research at their 4:30 and 6 p.m. games. Sophomore Jonathan Segal organized the event, in honor of his maternal grandmother who has advanced Alzheimer’s disease. Friday’s games are open to the public and all are welcome to attend.
“The idea for this came when I saw how the NFL wears pink to support breast cancer awareness,” said Jonathan. “I thought, ‘What if we turned a North Shore basketball game into an event in support of Alzheimer’s research?’ I wanted to do something to impact others in honor of my grandmother.”
Concessions companies Skinny Pop and Greater Than are donating food and drinks to be sold at the games, with 100% of the proceeds going to the Alzheimer’s Association. Jonathan and his older brother Andrew have also designed purple “Dunk Alzheimer’s” T-shirts that the North Shore team will wear during warm-ups. Joylinx puzzle rings will be available, with a portion of the proceeds going to the Alzheimer’s Association.
“Most of what we are going to do will be during the varsity game [at 6 p.m.],” said Jonathan. “We’re going to sell concessions to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association, and we’re going to have one of the Upper School students be our announcer. There will be a 3-point contest during halftime, to raise awareness and boost the energy of the crowd.”
The event is not only for North Shore fans. Jonathan wants to involve the opposing team, Northridge Preparatory School, and any other spectators who choose to attend.
“We’re hoping to get as much support as we can, so anyone can come, from anywhere,” said Jonathan. “My grandpa is even flying into town. I told him we’re doing this event for Nana, and he’s really excited.”
When asked about his relationship with his grandmother, who was diagnosed in 2002, Jonathan said her memory is nearly gone but she remains one of his favorite people.
“We’ve always been close. I feel like, whether or not she can recognize me, if I were in her position what I would want is for someone to be helping me and showing me love and support. I want to try to do for her what she always did for me.”
North Shore Country Day School, established in 1919, is a college-preparatory school of 500 students in grades junior kindergarten through 12th grade, located at 310 Green Bay Road in Winnetka.