Teens can participate in Clarkston’s Summer After Dark Basketball League starting June 26.

Participation in the league is free and open to youth ages 14 to 19.

It takes place Tuesdays and Thursdays until Aug. 2 and is co-sponsored by DeKalb Police Athletic League and Clarkston First Baptist Church.

Clarkston City Manager Keith Barker said the summer league allows the city to check off several boxes on its civic and community engagement goals and objectives.

“The city gets to expand our partnership with Clarkston First Baptist Church, and to partner, for the first time, with PALs, a national organization that already has the infrastructure, experience and abilities to implement and manage this program and league,” Barker said. “We, the city, get to provide additional recreational offerings and lastly, but more importantly, the city continues its efforts to prevent youth violence.”

The Summer After Dark Basketball League will take place in Clarkston First Baptist Church Gym, 3999 Church St.

It includes mandatory Life Skills Workshops at 9 p.m. Teams will play for championship rounds and trophies. League participants will also learn about local employment opportunities.

DeKalb Police Detective Khary Ricketts, program manager and coordinator for PALs Plus, said that attendance and participation in the workshops is mandatory.   

“During these workshops, each participate will learn from subject matter experts about a variety of topics, including anti-gang awareness, drugs and violence causes and consequences, that they will hopefully carry with them throughout the course of their lives,” Ricketts said.

“It’s simple; if they don’t attend, they don’t play.”

To participate, teens can just show up on Tuesdays and Thursday at 9 p.m.  

To register and for more information, contact Ricketts at kkricketts@dekalbcountyga.gov or 404-664-1225; or Terry Sanders at tsanders@cityofclarkston.com or 470-244-5355.