Thirty five years after the mythical Hickory Huskers played their last game on the hardwood inside the former Knightstown high school gym, one of the most popular sports movies ever captured on film continues to inspire life lessons about accepting change, giving second changes, the power of forgiveness, taking responsibility, and more.
Hoosier Gym events coordinator Robert Garner spends his days giving tours of the Henry County landmark and – during any normal year – organizing tournament played by visiting teams.
Garner’s new book is called “Eleven Life Lessons – A Guide to be a Good Friend, Neighbor, and Every Day Good Person to Enjoy a Rewarding Life.” The book is published by Knightstown’s Mitchell Fleming printing and is available for $25 from www.ElevenLifeLessons.com. A portion of the proceeds will go directly to supporting Knightstown’s Hoosier Gym.
Garner is a 1966 graduate of Knightstown High School and played on the last high school team to call the famous gym their home court. Garner attended Indiana Central College (now University of Indianapolis) and enjoyed a professional career in the medical field.
“I was inspired by Angelo Pizzo’s script for ‘Hoosiers’ and the timeless themes that run throughout this incredible film. Five years ago, I returned to Hoosier Gym for the first time in 50 years, and it’s my great honor to serve as the facility’s events coordinator. I’m tremendously proud of the fact that a dozen current NBA players and several in the WBA have played ball on our court. But the story of ‘Hoosiers’ is bigger and more important than just a sports movie,” Garner says, “even though it’s almost everyone’s favorite sports movie!”
Garner says he simply wanted to put into words his feelings about the classic film and how eleven life lessons can be learned from the picture.
“I’m dedicating a portion of the proceeds from each book’s sale to support this Henry County landmark. We’re grateful to have the support of the State of Indiana for recent restoration work, and we want to make sure that this basketball mecca can continue to inspire for decades to come,” says Garner, who will be signing copies of the new book on the evening of Thursday, August 27 during a screening of “Hoosiers” planned for the Auburn-Garrett Drive-In movie theater just north of Fort Wayne.
A limited number of tickets to the special drive-in screening are available at www.HelpHoosierGym.com, an event that is sponsored by the Indiana Broadcasters Association and area radio and TV stations.
For more information about Eleven Life Lessons, please contact Robert Garner directly at [email protected]