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Our AAU basketball program offers an exceptional opportunity for boys from across the Greater New Haven metro area to sharply upgrade their game. “Our teams have competed on a regional and national level for years,” says Boys & Girls Club of New Haven’s Athletic Director Tharon Mayes, “That’s very prideful, but we are not only about basketball. Our AAU basketball program is committed to the academic success of our players.”

For Tryout information click on image below. Today’s (3/15) tryouts have been postponed to Monday, March 20th

Mayes knows what it takes to become a player-scholar athlete. Mayes was a star at Florida State University. He remains one of the leading scorers in the schools history and was honored by an induction into the ACC Hall of Fame. After graduation, Mayes played in the NBA with the Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles Clippers and then enjoyed a long professional career in Europe. He also played on the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven nationally-ranked AAU basketball teams back in the early1980’s.

“We win if they go to school”


AAU Basketball is More Than Winning on the Court

The AAU basketball program at the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven reflects the Club’s broader goals of establishing healthy lifestyles and academic success.

While delivering an exceptionally high level of coaching for basketball skills and game strategy, the program requires that school report cards also are collected from all team members. “Doing well in school is part of the what’s required to be in our AAU basketball program,” says Mayes. “That not only opens the doors to more college scholarship opportunities. It also greatly expands the opportunities for great futures – in whatever our kids choose to do.”  Tutors and mentors are available to support all the children and teens participating in any of the Boys & Girls Club programming. The Club also coordinates with the child’s teachers.

“Our AAU kids now challenge each other for academic achievement, says Mayes. “School comes first. Not doing well in school? The player will not play until they do. Today, most of our players are A or B students.”

“Our mindset is not about going pro,” says Mayes, “but it is about creating great futures. Basketball can help our kids get into college, but the character building that we work towards helps them get the college degree that will give the opportunity to succeed wherever their interests or passions take them.”

For more information, contact Coach Mayes at: (203) 787-0187 or

Also contact Coach Mayes if you are interested in developing an AAU basketball program for girls.




The Today Show, BGCNH, BGCAJust Aired, NBC featured a story on a Club member from the Boys & Girls Clubs of New Haven, Shanice P., and her family. The story aired on “The Today Show,” in conjunction with Matt Lauer’s bike ride from Boston to New York City in support of Red Nose Day this morning. The segment focused on the obstacles Shanice has overcome, and how her participation in the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven over the past 5 years has impacted her life and that of her family.


Red Nose Day was started in the United Kingdom 30 years ago to have fun, raise money and change the lives of children living in poverty. This year is the inaugural Red Nose Day in the United States and Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) is one of 12 charities selected to receive funding. BGCA will use this funding to support vital programs dedicated to the academic success of Club youth, specifically Summer Brain Gain, which targets summer learning loss among school –aged youth. On May 21st, the Today Show on NBC will air a benefit event featuring stand-up, sketch comedy, music performances, and compelling short films about the cause and some of the individual children that Red Nose Day will help in this country and around the world.  You can root for Matt on social media using #gomattgo.

The Boys & Girls Club of New Haven has been a major resource in the New Haven community for over a century. Young people have relied upon the enriching opportunities and resources offered by the Club to help them succeed in school, learn critical life skills, prepare for adulthood and have a safe, fun and affordable place to spend their out-of-school hours. The Club is family –centered, working to break the cycles of generational poverty and providing critical support for working parents.

To view the story on The Today Show website click on link: Matt Lauer’s interview with Shanice Patterson

For more information please contact Stephanie Barnes, Executive Director at (203) 787-0187, x17; You may also visit our website,

Thanks for making a difference.


Stephanie Barnes
Executive Director



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