Basketball, music festival aims to stop the violence in Philly

PHILADEL (WPVI) -- It was a basketball game where everyone involved walked away a winner.

Coach Horace Timmons said the fact that so many teens from the area showed up to Parkside Evans Recreation Center to play was a victory itself.

"If you look around at all the people we got out here, from the police department to our political people, it shows that people do care," Timmons said.

The games were part of the third "City of Dreams" Basketball & Music Festival.

The event itself is meant to draw in the public, not just for some great basketball, but also provide important resources, like education, legal advice and health services.

But, the main message behind Saturday's gathering: stop the violence.

"We're trying to show them and let them know there is a big difference and that we're here for you. Not just for a photo-op, we're actually really here for you," said City of Dreams Sister Taleah Taylor.

Councilman David Oh was among several elected leaders in attendance.

"We gotta show people that we love them, we care about them so much so that we want to do this because they have a bright future," he said.

Philadelphia police were also present. A show of support event organizers said they appreciated greatly.

"We're trying to bridge the gap between the community and police officers and we're doing all that. We just bridging the gap between athletics, music, the community anti-violence, make some noise for City of Dreams," said City of Dreams Vice President Marquee "Plex" Terry.

Past shootings at the playground are not far from the minds of some. Earlier this month, a shooting at a playground in West Philadelphia left seven people wounded. Another shooting in the Strawberry Mansion section of the city left one man wounded.

The event also kicks off a series of other programs and events aimed at community outreach.
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