Every November, the Hard Rock resort plays host to a remarkable destination sporting event that brings top US college basketball players head to head right here on the Riviera Maya. The Cancún Challenge is organized every year by Triple Crown Sports and hosted by the Hard Rock Riviera Maya Resort in Puerto Aventuras. The Cancún Challenge features eight NCAA Division I men’s basketball teams and ten women’s teams. The resort’s convention center ballroom is converted into an arena providing fans a unique close-up fan experience. All men’s and women’s games during the Cancun Challenge are either broadcast live in HD on CBS Sports Network or webcast live at CBSSports.com/ULive. If you are a basketball fan in Mexico, this is the place to be!

tx-state-wbbFor the past two years, event organizers Bonnie and Brent Amick have worked together with Seaside Rotary to provide assistance to local charitable initiatives such as The KKiS Project and Kicks4Kids. Players, their families, support staff and fans are encouraged to bring school supplies, backpacks and sneakers which are then distributed to local families in need. Brent and Bonnie communicated with parents and coaches and even added a page in the tournament program and an informational page on the Cancun Challenge website to help promote our efforts.

Representatives from Seaside Rotary, The KKiS Project and Kicks4Kids were on hand throughout the tournament accepting donations of sneakers and essential school materials. Kicks4Kids was able to collect almost 100 pairs of new sneakers. Significant contributions from tournament announcer Darren Tipton, Houston Baptist coach Steven Key and the women’s team from Texas State provided a great start for the 2015 holiday sneaker drive.

cristo-reyTriple Crown has also made it possible for hundreds of local school children to attend the games. Triple Crown provides the tournament tickets, Hard Rock offers up unlimited food and refreshments and Seaside Rotary arranges for the transportation bringing children in from the jungle in busloads. None of the children have ever attended a sporting event like this. Most have never been inside the grounds of a resort property. Some have never been outside of their village. It is the experience of a lifetime.

It’s an exciting and emotional week for everyone involved and we are all looking forward to next year’s tournament.

For official 2015 tournament results and information about the 2016 Cancun Challenge as it becomes available, visit http://www.cancunchallenge.net/.

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