NEW YORK, Jan 23 -- The world’s greatest athletes will showcase the game of basketball on an international stage during NBA All-Star 2003, a series of events that highlights the NBA’s most talented players and illustrates their commitment to charitable endeavors. NBA All-Star 2003 will be hosted by the Atlanta Hawks, February 3-9, and will bring one of the world’s premier sporting events to the city of Atlanta.

NBA All-Star 2003 will highlight the league's strong and lasting commitment to programs that improve the quality of life for all people, as evidenced by the NBA’s national reading campaign -- Read to Achieve. Each year the league, its players and its teams donate millions of dollars and countless hours to charitable organizations.

Ahmad Rashad and Summer Sanders will host the All-Star Read to Achieve Celebration special from NBA All-Star Jam Session.
Greg Shamus/NBAE/Getty Images
Building on those efforts, NBA All-Star 2003 will feature:

MONDAY, Feb. 3 -- NBA Read to Achieve Reading Caravan -- A bus filled with WNBA stars, NBA Legends, NBA family members and Read to Achieve All-Stars will visit schools and a children’s hospital in Atlanta. The caravan will bring the joy and importance of reading to the youth of Atlanta.

TUESDAY, Feb. 4 -- Basketball and Books with The Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA; Nike court unveiling -- The Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA presented by Gatorade and Nike, will play host to hundreds of children from local community organizations and schools during a series of clinics to show the benefits of the game of basketball, teach the fundamentals of the game, highlight sportsmanship and leadership skills and reinforce the importance of reading. A court dedication ceremony at the Anderson Boys and Girls Club will precede one of the clinics to unveil a refurbished basketball court by the NBA and Nike made partially from recycled Nike sneakers.

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 5 -- WNBA Nothing But N.E.T. Challenge -- The WNBA will host a community event involving third through fifth graders from an Atlanta public school and will focus on the League’s 2003 Public Service Campaign -- living an active and healthy lifestyle and retaining a positive attitude. The students will compete against each other in three different fun and spirited interactive challenges based on their existing school health/physical education curriculum and materials provided by the WNBA. The event will feature prominent WNBA players as well as local VIPs from the political, sports and entertainment world.

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 5 -- Wheel Chair Basketball Clinic -- Members of the East and West squads from the National Wheelchair Basketball Association All-Star basketball teams will host a clinic for 50 disabled children from the Atlanta area at the Bernie Marcus Jewish Community Center.

THURSDAY, Feb. 6 -- NBA Legacy Project -- The NBA and Atlanta Hawks will unveil extensive renovations at the Adams Park Recreation Center in Atlanta, including a newly finished Reading and Learning Center. The Reading and Learning Center will provide thousands of donated books, resource guides and materials to the hundreds of children regularly attending the Adams Park Recreation Center. In addition, Dell will be providing new computers and educational software.

THURSDAY, Feb. 6 -- National Wheelchair Basketball Association All-Star Game -- It’s an East vs. West showdown as the top wheelchair basketball players from across the nation meet in the fourth NWBA All-Star Classic.

FRIDAY, Feb. 7 -- Read to Achieve Reading Rally -- The Read To Achieve event will feature NBA and WNBA players, and celebrities joining together with thousands of Atlanta area school children who will participate in a reading rally and challenge.

SATURDAY, Feb. 8 -- NBA All-Star Read to Achieve Celebration -- A one-of-a-kind television special featuring NBA All-Stars and some of today’s hottest entertainment celebrities joining together to highlight the important role of reading in life achievements. The event will be simulcast on an unprecedented 12 different networks, including TNT.

In one of the most competitive seasons in years, the NBA All-Star Game will feature the brightest stars from the Eastern and Western conferences going head to head on Sunday, February 9 at Philips Arena in Atlanta. The game will be broadcast live in primetime at 8 p.m. ET on TNT in the United States, and to more than 212 countries around the world. Starters will be announced at 7 p.m. ET tonight on TNT.

Philips Arena, which opened during the 1999-2000 season, will also host the events of NBA All-Star Saturday, which includes the got milk? Rookie Challenge, the 989 Sports Skills Challenge, Jeep All-Star Hoop-it-Up, the 1 800 CALL ATT Shootout, and the Sprite Rising Stars Slam Dunk. NBA All-Star Saturday will be televised live by TNT, starting at 4 p.m.

From February 6-9, NBA All-Star Jam Session, the NBA’s premier fan event, takes place at the Georgia World Congress Center. Jam Session, which offers affordable family activities during the week, will feature more than 350,000 square feet of interactive basketball activities, games and entertainment.

This marks the second time since the Hawks move to Atlanta that the team has hosted an NBA All-Star Game. The 1978 Game was played at the Omni, where 15,491 fans watched the East All-Stars defeat the West 133-125. Randy Smith of the Buffalo Braves (now the Los Angeles Clippers) scored 27 points and grabbed seven rebounds en route to the Most Valuable Player award.