The NBA's All-Star weekend is going to be a working vacation.
With the festivities heading to New Orleans this season, the league is planning an All-Star day of service on that Friday to kick off events.
NBA commissioner David Stern will announce those plans at a news conference Wednesday before the Hornets host Sacramento that night. The game is the first of the Hornets' full-time return to New Orleans after they spent most of the past two seasons in Oklahoma City following Hurricane Katrina.
``We'll be announcing the specifics of the campaign (Wednesday) when I go there, we have a community event,'' Stern said while attending the season opener in San Antonio. ``But we're in, we're in for a lot. We're proud that our team is going back. We're equally proud that they're ahead in sponsorships and ticket sales of where they were pre-Katrina.
``And we think that sports has a role to play both with what we can give back, what we can build, but also what we can do to sort of improve the morale of the community and let the kids of New Orleans know that they're very much in our minds as they go to school and their families try to have a normal life.''
Every NBA team that visits New Orleans during the regular season will participate in a community activity. Through its NBA Cares program, the league and its players plan to create 40 learning or playing centers.
The NBA and its players have contributed more than $15 million to the Gulf Region, along with helping construct 35 homes and five playgrounds.
All-Star weekend is scheduled for Feb. 15-17. More than 2,500 current and former players, along with other NBA family members are expected to participate in the All-Star weekend service event.
The Friday events of All-Star weekend usually include player sessions with the media and the rookie game.
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