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Basketball Museum Is Something to Shoot For

October 06, 2002|Jane Engle

Hoops fans visiting Boston or Hartford, Conn., might consider a detour to Springfield, Mass., where the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame reopened last weekend as a $45-million high-tech museum.

The striking new building, with a nine-story spherical dome lighted by hundreds of colored bulbs, is about twice as big as the previous one, spokesman Howie Davis said. It's part of a $100-million redevelopment of the Connecticut Riverfront area.

Besides viewing tributes to more than 200 Hall of Famers, visitors can shoot baskets, play sportscaster (and record their play-by-play narratives), match wits with professional coaches' calls and learn about the history of the game. Among more than 900 artifacts is an 1891 list of basketball rules with handwritten notes by James Naismith (1861-1939), who is credited with inventing the sport that year.

The museum, a half-hour drive north of Hartford and two hours from Boston, is open daily; hours vary. Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for ages 5-15, free for children younger than 5. (877) 446-6752, www.hoophall.com.

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