Verizon Wireless Picks Teams To "Hoop It Up"

Verizon Wireless Picks Teams To "Hoop It Up"

Company Sending and Outfitting Teams from Boys & Girls Clubs,
King Community Center, Big Brothers Big Sisters

July 23, 2002



Dozens of local youths will get a chance to test their basketball skills in the NBA Hoop-it-Up tournament, compliments of Verizon Wireless. Eighteen five-member teams from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Greater Milwaukee, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center will test their abilities against their peers at the Bradley Center, July 27-28. Now in its 14th year, Hoop-It-Up is a 3-on-3 series of competitive basketball events. Verizon Wireless is a nationwide sponsor of Hoop-It-Up.

"The Hoop-It-Up tournament is fantastic way for kids to spend a weekend," said Tracy Nolan, president of Verizon Wireless' Wisconsin/Illinois Region. "Verizon Wireless is very pleased to be able to send nearly 100 youths from three great local organizations to the basketball tournament. It's fun for them and, frankly, it's a lot of fun for us, too."

Norman McGee, Director of Athletic Programs for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee said, "The teams we're sending are extremely excited about this event. Hoop-It-Up is an NBA event and that affiliation makes this tournament a big deal for these youths. We are really grateful to Verizon Wireless for this opportunity."

In addition to its role as team sponsor, Verizon Wireless also will sponsor two special competitive events during the Hoop-It-Up games: the Verizon Wireless [FREEUP] Free Throw Contest and Mobile Messenger Madness.

In the [FREEUP] Free Throw Contest, sharpshooters compete against one another to see who can shoot the most free-throw baskets. Best shooter wins a [FREEUP] wireless service package and trophy. [FREEUP], popular among young adults, is Verizon Wireless' pre-paid wireless service that bundles nationwide voice service, text messaging and voice mail.

Mobile Messenger Madness is an interactive trivia contest based on Verizon Wireless' short message service (SMS), Mobile Messenger. At each tournament, contests will be held hourly to see who can correctly answer first an NBA trivia question in SMS format. Prospective contestants can help increase their chances of winning by practicing at the Verizon Wireless booth. Mobile Messenger is fun, fast, discreet, inexpensive method that gives consumers two choices in how they use their phones to communicate: talk and text.

"Being a local Hoop-It-Up sponsor provides our company an opportunity to take an active role in the community while also enabling us to further promote our identity in Milwaukee," said Nolan.

Milwaukee is one of 48 cities throughout the United States and Canada that are hosting the Hoop-It-Up tournament. After all local competitions end in September, the tournament culminates with a championship competition of Top Guns in November.

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 30 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at http://www.verizonwireless.com.

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