The Huntington varsity girls' volleyball team reached the Suffolk playoffs. (Darin Reed and Rachel Learned photo
The Huntington boys' basketball team and their girls' team counterparts shopped for children of struggling families.

Blue Devil Basketball Players Shop to Brighten Holidays

January 3, 2024

Blue Devil boys’ and girls’ basketball players went to work to brighten the holidays of 75 local children from financially challenged families, teaming up with Huntington High School alum Michael Brown on a shopping spree.

A member of Huntington’s Class of 1987 and the owner of Empire Automotive Group, Mr. Brown attended Boston University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in the School of Management. He later obtained a graduate degree at BU in management consulting. He played football and ran on the track team for the Blue Devils.

Mr. Brown reached out to Huntington basketball coach Kevin Thorbourne about getting the Blue Devil basketball teams involved in a holiday community service project. He provided $4,000 for the children’s gifts. Chick-fil-A and Marco’s pizzeria joined the initiative by donating food items for a Christmas Party with Santa Claus.

The Blue Devil players and coaches met at Target in Huntington in separate boys’ and girls’ team shifts and fanned out around the store, searching for items that would interest children. The teenagers checked prices to stretch the donated dollars as far as possible. With shopping carts full, they headed to the check-out registers.

The gifts were later wrapped and readied for presentation to the kids at the party with Santa at Empire Toyota.