City reverses decision to reject gift aimed at supporting young athletes

Dr. Jimmy Miyasaka grew up playing basketball at parks and gyms all over Oahu.

So he decided to donate some much-needed equipment to the city.

He tells us he wanted to give back and inspire young players to do the same when they grow up.

His plan sounded simple, but the process hit a snag.

During the day you can find Dr. Jimmy Miyasaka at his office helping his patients see clearly.

But when he’s not at his office, the former college basketball player says he’s never too far from a basketball court. “I’m an eye doctor in the morning. That’s my morning job, but I love basketball. Basketball is my passion. I’ve met a lot of people through basketball in the community.”

Along with starting a basketball league, he also regularly gives back to young basketball players, most recently in the form of two new breakaway rims for his old stomping grounds, the Kalakaua District Park gym.

It’s a gift worth $600. “Coming back home I was gone for 12 years and a lot of the parks are run down and beat up, so they needed help. I was there playing basketball. I said ‘hey, let me just donate something back.'”

Dr. Miyasaka went through the City and county to donate the new rims, but ran into a roadblock in the form of the city’s no dunking policy.

The Department of Parks and Recreation telling him the rims didn’t fit within their policy. “It was weird that they would deny it because looking at their gym, the rims are all rusted and the nets are broken. I wanted to donate a new rim and I don’t see why they wouldn’t accept it.”

After some consideration, the city said the donation could be accepted because the park already had older rims similar to the rims being donated.

So now the new rims will move from Dr Miyasaka’s office, to their new home at Kalakaua District Park’s gym. “It’s more about giving the kids opportunities out there. It’s kind of a rugged community so to get them something like this so they can have the opportunity to play basketball on a decent rim and fall in love with the game, that’ll teach them a lot of different values.”

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