Donation to pay for hoops league

Local landowner pays for D’Iberville, Miss., basketball teams

By:Joseph Harvie
   Joseph HarvieStaff Writer
   As winter progresses, indoor recreation basketball season has started across the country, including one Mississippi town still struggling to get back on its feet after Hurricane Katrina.
   The children of D’Iberville, Miss., will have a chance to shoot some hoops in an organized league this year thanks to a donation by a South Brunswick landowner sent through South Brunswick Rallies for Relief.
   D’Iberville, a Gulf Coast city of about 8,000, was nearly destroyed when Hurricane Katrina blasted the region on Aug. 29. South Brunswick adopted the city after the tragedy and set up Rallies for Relief as a way to get donations to the region.
   Ellen Gambatese, chairwoman and the wife of Mayor Frank Gambatese, said the township received a $2,700 donation from Robert Stanton of New York City that will be used to sponsor teams for D’Iberville’s Biddy Basketball League and help pay for uniforms and other league costs.
   Mr. Stanton, who sold 90 acres of a 101-acre parcel in Kendall Park, across from Woodlot Park on New Road, to the township and Middlesex County, would not comment for the story.
   "He wanted to know how he can help," Ms. Gambatese said. "And a request had come in that the people of D’Iberville wanted the boys to be able to play basketball. There are 27 teams and they needed $100 per team to be sponsored."
   Ms. Gambatese said the donation made Rallies for Relief’s job easier because the commission did not have to seek out other donors to support the league.
   "It helped things here on this end because we didn’t have to look for 27 sponsors," Ms. Gambatese said. "And it enabled the people there to get the league started."
   Anyone interested in donating money to the Rallies for Relief fund can mail checks made out to South Brunswick Township, with Rallies for Relief written in the memo section, to the South Brunswick Municipal Building, Katrina Relief Fund, P.O. Box 190 Monmouth Junction, N.J. 08852.