Petco Park has announced its schedule for the Bill Walton Basketball Festival, a week of hoops-themed activities leading up to the first game of college basketball in the park’s history.
The events will build anticipation up to the men’s basketball game between the San Diego State Aztecs and the University of San Diego Toreros on Saturday, Dec. 5.
Starting on Nov. 30, festival-goers can look forward to games, community clinics and corporate competitions played on an outdoor court to be built on Petco’s infield. Fans can expect to see La Mesa native Bill Walton, the NBA Hall of Famer who played for the San Diego Clippers and Boston Celtics, make several appearances during the festival.
The Dec. 5 match marks the 18th consecutive season the Aztecs and Toreros have faced each other, as well as the second time they have played on a neutral site. The last time that happened was over a decade ago on Dec. 1, 1992, at the then-San Diego Sports Arena.
Both men and women’s teams from CIF high schools throughout San Diego County will play during the festival. Some of the schools slated to participate include La Jolla Country Day, Mt. Miguel, San Ysidro, Southwest, Central Union, Castle Park, Sweetwater, Valhalla, Helix Charter and La Jolla.
Multiple nonprofit groups and community organizations will also use the court for events and clinics. For instance, the Monarch School will teach a physical education class to promote an active, healthy lifestyle. Additionally, the Challenged Athletes Foundation, which provides support to athletes with physical challenges, will host an exhibition of wheelchair basketball.
The Barrio Logan College Institute, local YMCAs and Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater San Diego will hold open gym sessions on the court for youth participation in their programs. Moreover, the top Gun Basketball Academy will host championship games for 7th and 8th graders on Friday and Saturday, along with a paid clinic benefiting charity groups on Sunday. To sign up for the clinic, click here.