The Right Home for a Basketball Champion

Lifelong memories will be made in Calgary this weekend as our city hosts the Alberta high school 4A basketball championships.

Right now, I'm sitting in the gym at St. Francis high school; it is the ugliest gym I've ever been in. The low ceiling makes it feel cramped and the bright lights emphasis the putrid orange paint that's totally unnecessary for a team called the Browns. I can't help but remember the great plays and big wins, the disappointing loses and bad calls that make this gym a special place for me.

The teenagers that I'm watching right now, playing their hearts out, will feel the same way the next time they're blinded by these lights.

High school sports is a special thing.

Mothers often ask their realtor, "what are the schools like in the neighborhood?" (my aunt teaches in the public system so I have some inside info). The father often follows up with, "how good is the football/basketball/volleyball team?".  To me, this is a dangerous question. A better question is: 'does the school have a good coach?'. Even if they do, every year is different.

Many moons ago, I was lucky enough to live in a neighborhood where I had two high schools to choose from; I picked my high school because they had a great basketball coach and lots of good players went there. We won the city championship in grade 10. Only losing one game all year, in this orange purgatory that's burning my retinas right now.

But it wasn't the right school for me. I haven't spoken to anyone from that team in 10 years. I transferred to Henry Wise Wood the next year and played along side my best friends. The first memory that came to mind when I entered this ugly orange cage today was our big playoff upset against St Francis in grade 12. My best friends and I still talk about that game while we're giving bottles to our babies.

So, if you're at the championship game (which will be played in Crescent Heights' beautiful, rowdy, museum-like gym) think to yourself - those kids are here because a realtor showed their parents a house in a neighborhood that fed to the right school.

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Tim Olynik

Tim Olynik

CENTURY 21 Summit Realty
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