Story submitted by Syd Mandelbaum
Twenty-five teams competed in Sunday’s 26th Annual Rock and Wrap It Up! Sid Tanenbaum Basketball Tournament, where scholarships were given to students from four local schools.
Facing stiff competition, the Hard Knox Academy team saw victory at this year’s tournament in , where the courts are named after Tanenbaum. This year’s sponsors were the Nassau County Department of Parks and Recreation and the Sid Tanenbaum Foundation.
(See our video of last year's tournament .)
The Sid Tanenbaum Foundation gave scholarships to students at , , and . The selected scholar athletes receive a monetary award. Since 1987, over $27,000 in scholarships has been distributed.
The annual tournament is held to honor the memory of the late NYU All-American and New York Knickerbocker. Tanenbaum was inducted into the Jewish Athlete’s Hall of Fame in 1994. Since 1987, over 6,500 players have participated in the four-on-four tournament.
The tournament’s committee is chaired by Rock and Wrap It Up! founder and former Nassau County Human Rights Commissioner Syd Mandelbaum. The hope of the event is to better relations amongst all Nassau County residents.
Other committee members have included the late Frank Mangiapane, who played with Tanenbaum on the NYU team in 1947, and George Israel, who played with Tanenbaum at North Woodmere Park. Mangiapane was honored in 1997 on the 50th anniversary of the National Basketball Association.
Rap artist MC Serch helped raise awareness for the tournament, and supplied the shirts as gifts to all that participated. Port Jefferson Sporting Goods donated the shirts and the printing.
Many of tournament players have gone on to basketball careers in college and some into the NBA. College scouts attend the games to recruit for their basketball programs, and the games have become a showcase for the best talent in Nassau County.