Gaylord, MI

June 8th - 9th

Team Entry Fee: $180
Deadline: 05/27/2024

Preferred Hotel Choice: Comfort Inn and Suites

Gus Macker 3 on 3 returns to Gaylord

Gus Macker 3 on 3 Basketball tournament is returning to Gaylord June 7-9

By Dave Baragrey 

GAYLORD – Gus Macker Basketball is returning to Gaylord, June 7-9, 2024 

Gus Macker Tournaments are designed for basketball players who love the fun of the driveway game – male or female, from age 7 to 70-plus, short and tall, the most experienced or those with little or no  experience who just want to play. 

The tournament is returning to Gaylord for a third year but will be moving dates to June 7-9 said James Vanderveer, director of the Otsego County Sportsplex. Vanderveer is a long time registered basketball  referee and has officiated state tournament and college games. The tournament again will be held in the  parking lot of the Sportsplex. Vanderveer commented, "I am excited to have Gus Macker return for our  third year to Gaylord. A tournament like this brings a lot of excitement to the community and to the  sport of basketball. We will also bring back the cornhole tournament on Friday night.” 

In 2023, the return of the Gus Macker tournament to Gaylord saw 154 teams participate which was a  20% increase from the year prior. The charity tournament saw over $4,000 raised for local sports  organizations. Vanderveer said, “We were very happy with the increase in results from last year. There  was a lot of excitement following the event last year and many families said they planned to get a team  together for 2023.” 

Registration forms are available online at 

This year is the 50th year of Gus Macker Basketball. For the first 13 years it was a single tournament  started by a pair of brothers and their friends in Lowell, Mich., in 1974 but became a festival  phenomenon and America’s Original 3-on-3 Basketball Tour in 1987. 

Through the years there have been almost 1,500 sanctioned Gus Macker Tournaments presented for  over 700,000 teams or almost 2.7 million players and played in front of almost 28 million spectators  across the country. 

Teams are computer-matched into male and female divisions in one of three categories: Junior, Adult,  or Top. The age, height and experience of all four players on each team are considered in bracketing.  Teams receive at least three scheduled games each tournament. Gus Macker is a double-elimination  tournament, but with a consolation bracket historically called “The Toilet Bowl” for teams that lose the  first two games. 

In addition to the economic impact of bringing thousands of players and fans into the community, the  charitable aspect of the Gus Macker Tournament is very important. At each tournament site the local  organizing committee donates proceeds from their event to a local charity or charities. Also, in many  

cities local non-profit clubs, groups and organizations raise funds through on-site food concession sales,  special events and other on-site activities. The total amount donated to local charities by the local  committees has steadily increased over the past few years. Gus Macker estimates that since 1987 - approximately $16 million has been raised for worthwhile local charities.

Gaylord first hosted the Gus Macker tournament in 1991. Then Gaylord Chamber of Commerce director,  Bill Wishart, was a basketball fan and referee and connected with the McNeal brothers to bring this  popular basketball tournament to the Alpine Village. At the height of its popularity the Gaylord Gus  Macker tournament hosted as many as 5,000 players and an estimated additional 20,000 fans. Gaylord  hosted the Gus Macker tournament for 15 years until 2006.  

Family fun in a festival atmosphere is always the goal of a Gus Macker Tournament, and we proudly  serve as the most popular basketball tournament for outdoor play in downtown streets, parking lots and  community parks across the country. 

Learn more and register your team at Online Registration deadline is May 20th.