NEW ORLEANS, Jan. 15 (AP) -- Shaquille O'Neal and Reggie Bush have teamed up to host a party on the weekend of the NBA All-Star game to raise money for various charities in New Orleans.

"This whole weekend is about people being in New Orleans for New Orleans,'' O'Neal said in a statement Tuesday. "We wanted to show people coming together, celebrating what has been done and remembering that there's still a lot to do.''

A perennial NBA All-Star with the Miami Heat, O'Neal graduated from LSU and returns regularly to southern Louisiana.

Bush recently completed his second season with the New Orleans Saints after being their top draft choice when the NFL team returned to the city after being displaced one season following Hurricane Katrina.

The fundraiser, called the Big Easy Billiards Bash, will be held in a downtown hotel ballroom on Feb. 15, two days before the All-Star game. It includes a pool tournament and an auction. Charities slated to benefit include A Child's Wish, the Father T Foundation and Habitat for Humanity.

"This is a great city with great people,'' Bush said in the statement. "With the corporate and media attention that New Orleans will get during the NBA All-Star game, I wanted to make sure that there was a focus on helping the people that will be here when the parties and games are over.''


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