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Organizers: 'LeBron Appreciation Day' draws 8,500 fans

Posted Jun 21 2010 12:20PM

AKRON, Ohio (AP) -- Turns out LeBron James wasn't the only late arrival to an event celebrating his contributions to his hometown.

Organizers of "LeBron Appreciation Day" are now saying 8,500 people attended Saturday's event at InfoCision Stadium on the University of Akron's campus. Initially, school officials estimated the crowd at nearly 4,000, but event planners raised that number based on T-shirts handed out.

James arrived as the event was wrapping up, causing some fans on their way home to turn around and return to see the two-time NBA MVP, who accepted a "Hometown Hero" award from the city. James addressed and thanked the crowd but did not say anything about his impending free agency.

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