By Cass Teague
Next weekend will basically be Harlem Globetrotters Weekend in Music City. Thursday night, January 24 brings a special event at The Belcourt Cinema, prior to a doubleheader with special activities at the Bridgestone Arena on Saturday, January 26. Thursday is the world premiere screening of a feature-length documentary which tells the tale of legendary Harlem Globetrotter Jumpin’ Johnny Kline and his story of addiction, recovery and ultimate rebirth. The Globetrotters will entertain at Nashville’s premiere downtown indoor sports facility.
“Being a Globetrotter carries responsibilities that go far beyond basketball,” said Globetrotters President Howard Smith. “Our stars have not only introduced the sport of basketball to thousands of children around the world, but they bring goodwill to every country, and every culture, they visit.
The Globetrotters are currently in the midst of their 93rd year of touring with the Fan Powered World Tour, during which the team will play in more than 250 North American markets, as well as 30 countries worldwide. Score more fun when you upgrade your game experience with Magic Pass presented by Tum-e Yummies, a 30-minute interactive event.
Join in the celebration with other fans during their all-new Fan Powered World Tour. Interact with Globetrotters stars more than ever before, both on and off the court. New this year, you can download the Globetrotters’ interactive mobile application with exclusive features, including augmented reality (AR) basketball toss game and custom photo filters. The Globetrotters’ one-of-a-kind show is unrivaled in the world of family entertainment. Don’t miss out and get your tickets now, available at harlemglobetrotters.com Their Bridgestone Arena shows begin at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm on January 26, 2019.
Belcourt Theatre will host a new feature-length documentary on the life and times of Dr. John Kline. The theater is located at 2102 Belcourt Ave., Nashville TN 37212. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the film begins at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 24, 2019. The screening event will include authentic Globetrotter memorabilia, giveaways, a ticket raffle and panel discussion with filmmakers, Kline family members, and sports figures.
Dr. John Kline, “Jumpin’ Johnny”, was a high-leaping basketball player for the Harlem Globetrotters (1953-1959) & founded the Black Legends of Professional Basketball in 1996. Struggling with addiction during the end of his playing days, Kline went on to seek recovery, earn a bachelor’s, master’s, and Ph.D., and work with youth in schools and drug programs. Kline was recently named a finalist for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2019.
The Globetrotters will honor three former greats as Globetrotter Legends, the team’s highest honor short of jersey retirement, at three stops on their 2019 Fan Powered North American Tour. The three stars—Michael “Wild Thing” Wilson, Matt “Showbiz” Jackson, and Osborne “Goose” Lockhart—played a combined 48 seasons and collectively visited nearly 200 countries during their time as Globetrotters, and each left their mark as outstanding players and Ambassadors of Goodwill during their time with the team.
Wilson will be honored at the team’s show in Memphis on Jan. 18, while Jackson will be honored at the team’s show in Atlanta on Jan. 20, and Lockhart at the team’s show in Minneapolis on March 30. Wilson, Jackson and Lockhart will bring the total number of all-time Globetrotter Legend ring recipients to just 32.