Meet the Harlem Ambassadors-Part 1

The Harlem Ambassadors, who will be playing n the Conway Noon Lions Club’s upcoming fundraiser, are a talented group of college-educated athletes who provide an entertaining evening of basketball with lots of skilled ballhandling, high-flying slam dunks, hilarious comedy routines, and crowd interaction.

The Ambassadors’ mission is to deliver a quality basketball show to their audience throughout the United States and internationally. Their show is designed to be fun for all, with first-timers being awed and returning fans enjoying the tried-and-true gags, much like they would enjoy a rerun of a favorite comedy movie. They promote staying in school, staying off drugs, and racial harmony.

Here are some profiles of the Ambassadors’ top player, based on facts in the team’s website.

Nick Simpson, a 5-foot-11 guard, is from Bay City, Mich., and holds a degree in tyechnology management. He attended both Vermont Technical College and Indiana University. He iss in his second year with the Ambassadors, was all-conference twice at Kirtland Community College and an All-American at Vermont Tech.

He led the NAIA and United States Collegiate Athletic Association in scoring with a 29.5 point average. He has received a community service award for helping younger children with homework at a Boys and Girls Club. His advice to young people is: "Never let anyone ever tell you that you cannot achieve something you want in life. Go and get it."

Inekka Stevenson, one of the team’s point guards and in her first year with the team, is 5-7 and has a degree in exercisesScience from Friends University. Hailing from Freeport, Texas, she was named honorable mention all-American, first-team all conference, player of the week, and team MVP. She is passionate about her family, her relationship with God, and her success. She says that the best advice that has been given to her is: "Never give up, keep God in it. Whatever you do, include Him, too." Her advice to young people is: "Never give up and never dream little because there is there is no such thing as impossible. Have faith and work hard."

Jonathan Hart, a 6-05 dunker, is from Mount Olive, N.C., and holds a fitness manager degree from Barton College. He is also in his rookie season with the team. He earned a place on the Conference Carolinas’ all-conference second team, has been named best rebounder, and an MVP at Southern Wayne High School. His advice to young people is: "Keep negative people out of your life and surround yourself with positive people who are trying to make something out of their lives."

The Ambassadors will take on the Toad Suck Lions, a team of celebrity all-stars, at 6 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Hendrix Wellness and Athletic Center. Arkansas basketball legends Don Dyer, Cliff Garrison, and Marvin Delphj will coach the Lions.

Tickets can be purchased in advance at all Faulkner County First Security Bank, Simmons First National Bank, and Summit Bank branches. Tickets are also available at Gary Cox, CPA (811 Parkway); the Log Cabin Democrat and at the Faulkner County Library. Advance tickets for students are $1, seniors (55 and over) are $3, and adult tickets are $5. Children, 4 and under will be admitted free. Tickets will cost $1 more on game night.

Proceeds from the game will be used by the Conway Noon Lions Club to assist blind and visually-impaired citizens of Conway and Faulkner County who cannot afford eye care.