BARBOURVILLE – The second of six free regional basketball camps offered by Operation UNITE this summer will be held Thursday, June 9, at Flat Lick Elementary School in Knox County.

Camp begins at 4 p.m. and lasts approximately three hours. Participants are asked to arrive 30 minutes early to complete registration.

Any school-age youth is welcome to participate in the program, which provides basketball skills instruction by former University of Kentucky basketball star Jeff Sheppard in conjunction with anti-drug and self-esteem messages.

All participants will receive a free event T-shirt, regulation basketball, food and water, and be entered into a drawing for two portable basketball goals given away at the conclusion of each camp.

For comfort and safety participants are asked not to wear open-toe shoes or sandals.

Presented by Phoenix Products, Shoot Hoops Not Drugs camps are fun, interactive, and provide a safe, drug-free activity where children have an opportunity to interact with positive role models while learning fundamental basketball skills.

In addition, parents and guardians will have an opportunity to attend a UNITE Foundation education program on how to talk to their children about drugs. Information on the signs, symptoms and dangers posed by drugs will also be given.

As a senior at the University of Kentucky, Sheppard was named the NCAA’s Final Four Most Valuable Player in the Wildcats’ 1997-98 National Championship season. He would later go on to play one season with the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks and 3 years in Italy.

Helping make the 2011 Shoot Hoops Not Drugs camps possible are:

Gold Sponsors – Codell Construction, Knox County UNITE Coalition, Rockcastle County UNITE Coalition, Senture, SouthEast Telephone and Walmart of Eastern Kentucky.

Silver Sponsors – Citizens Bank & Trust (Jackson), Citizens National Bank (Somerset), First National Bank (Jackson), Huffman & Huffman, PSC (Somerset), and Johnny Maco’s Electrical Contracting (Jackson).

Bronze Sponsors – Alton Blakley Family of Dealerships (Somerset), Community Trust Bank (Pikeville) and St. Joseph-Martin (Floyd County).

Other Shoot Hoops Not Drugs camps to be held this summer are:

• Tuesday, June 7 – Nancy Elementary School in Pulaski County.

• Tuesday, June 14 – Breathitt County High School in Breathitt County.

• Thursday, July 7 – Jenkins High School in Letcher County.

• Tuesday, July 12 – Meade Memorial Elementary School in Johnson County.

• Thursday, July 14 – Rockcastle County Middle School in Rockcastle County.