Thunder fans push watch parties petition for education

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Thunder fans are on edge, keeping their fingers crossed the team will eke out a victory against the Golden State Warriors on their court and stay on the path to the NBA championship.

It's the same position Golden State fans found themselves in Saturday night but, instead of watching the battle from home or a nearby bar, thousands of Warrior fans showed up at the arena to bond and cheer on their team.

Now, some thunder fans are wondering why the 'Peake isn't open for a giant watch party.

One fan is now pushing that idea, but she also wants the concept to bring in money for our schools.

“I thought that's a pretty neat idea,” said Amber Hunsucker.

She said, with the Thunder loss that night, the watch party idea was the only good thing about the game, because it gave her the idea to tackle an issue close to her heart - budget cuts to state education.

She wants to take the state's passion for sports and turn it into dollars for schools.

The concept is simple - treat away games like home games in order to raise money for education.

“With how quickly the Golden State Warriors were able to sell 17,000 tickets at $15, they generated $225,000 for a local charity. Why not utilize our teams here in Oklahoma for Oklahoma education,” Hunsucker said.

She now has a petition going, trying to raise support for the idea.

That's how former teacher Judy Melon Hopper found out about it.

“Having somebody come up with an idea that just might work. This is what we wanted the legislature to do. But, they didn't, so now just public citizens are going to have to come up with ideas just like this,” Melon-Hopper said.

Right now, there are no large scale watch parties for Thunder games since live game viewings in Thunder Alley were shut down in 2012.

The city cited safety as the reason why.

As far as hosting watch parties, city leaders said they have looked at other ideas.

“We did look at this option, would be to put a video screen up in another facility like in the arena at the Cox Center and just have it free and let people go in there, because that is a controlled area,” said Thomas Anderson, Executive Manager-Special Projects Oklahoma City.

We reached out to Thunder management for a statement, but we haven't heard back yet.

The Thunder face off against Golden State for a seventh and deciding game tonight at Oracle Arena.

Tip-off is at 8 p.m.

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