• 48°

Help finish what he started 

Golf tournament scheduled to raise money to renovate open-air gym 

TRYON—He loved the game and he loved Harmon Field. Mason Lassiter had a dream for the basketball courts at Harmon Field and now local residents and businesses have band together to make sure the 17-year-old’s dream becomes a reality 

Mason passed away on April 10 before his dream could be reached. He had raised $11,000 towards a $40,000 goal to renovate the open-air basketball gym at Harmon Field. He said before his death his senior project should help the community, and he could not think of a better way to help than to make the courts safer and more enjoyable.  

Since his death, a group of people have been championing Mason’s efforts to make sure the project is completed, not only to see his vision come to a reality, but to now make a memorial to Mason, who was and a junior at the Polk County Early College.  

A golf tournament has been scheduled for Friday, June 28 at Cleghorn Golf and Sports Club in Rutherfordton. There will be lunch at noon and a 1:30 shotgun start. The tournament will help Mason’s project be finished. During the months of May and June, all donations to Mason’s project up to $15,000 will be matched by an anonymous donor, which will complete the fundraising needed.  

Mason, who lived in Tryon and played on the courts at Harmon Field since he was 9 years old, had a vision to resurface the floor, replace the goals, add some benches and a water fountain and have a mural painted there.  

“I’m going to try to replace the goals with all new goals,” Mason said in a video about the project before his death.  

He said the flooring is not in good shape and he and others have sustained injuries because it is slick.  

He also wanted to commission an artist to paint a mural on a wall there. 

“I want it to represent what Tryon really is and the citizens in it,” Mason said.  

Mason approached the Harmon Field Board of Supervisors last September, with the board welcoming his project.  

Mason said the courts lacked luster, are not safe and people rarely play there because the goals are broken and none of them have nets.  

Players, sponsors and prizes are still needed for the tournament.  

For more information, to help with the project or to make a private donation, contact Mason’s father, Matt Lassiter at matt.lassiter1@gmail.com by putting “Harmon Field” in the subject line.  

To make a donation online through Mason’s GoFundMe Page, visit gofundme.com/harmon-field-basketball-court.  

A Facebook page has also been set up at BasketballForMason 

To see more about Mason’s vision people can watch the video created by Fulton Hampton of Mason at the courts prior to his death. The video can be found on youtube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djpmZR1igFw.