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Wheelchair basketball at PCHS

When Reid Marks moved from Chicago to Park City before last school year, he noticed that he missed doing the sort of charity work he used to do through Chicago Cares, a nonprofit organization that "builds volunteer experiences that mobilize and inspire people to make Chicago a stronger community," according to its website.

So Marks decided to start Park City Cares.

"I realized there’s really nothing like that here," he said. "Obviously there’s the occasional fundraiser and charity project, but there’s no consistent thing. So I decided, why not start something? I started working on that this summer and figured the whole thing out."

Park City Cares will host its first big event on Monday night at the Park City High School gym. The event, beginning at 7:15 p.m., will give members of the community a chance to square off against the Utah Rush (formerly the Utah Rec N Crew), a wheelchair basketball team.

"I was kind of just spitballing ideas with my dad," Marks said. "I love basketball, so I figured it would be a fun idea. I think it can really benefit the team because all the proceeds go to them."

The Rush, who are a team of players 18 and under, are one of the best wheelchair basketball teams in the country, Marks said.

"They’re supposed to be really good," he said. "I’m assuming they’re going to kill whoever challenges them. It’s a lot harder than it looks. I’ve never played, but I imagine it’s a lot harder. But I think it’s going to be a lot of fun. I’m going to play a quarter."

Anyone can sign up to play for a quarter for $10, Marks said. Admission to the event will be $8 for adults and $4 for students. Families of five or more can get in for a $20 fee.

"The team has extra chairs," Marks said. "They’re going to bring five extra chairs. So, basically, anybody can sign up for a quarter and then we’ll just switch out the chairs when they’re done."

Marks has already secured an $800 donation from Overstock.com to sponsor the event, but hopes to raise even more money for the Rush on Monday night.

"Anything would be good," he said. "The $800 is a good start. Hopefully we can raise a couple thousand. If we could go up to $4,000, that would be awesome."

Marks said he hopes to fill the stands on Monday night for the inaugural Park City Cares event.

"I think it’s going to be a fun event to watch," he said. "You’re going to see one of the best wheelchair basketball teams in the country squaring off against whoever wants to challenge them."


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