The Maine high school basketball tournament every year is a destination for so many in the state. Basketball is religion in Maine and the tournament — split up in Portland, Augusta and Bangor — is always filled with basketball fans, athletes and parents.

We wanted to hear from you and find out what makes the Bangor location, formerly the Bangor Auditorium but now at the Bangor Cross Insurance Center, so special and what memories conjure up in your mind when you think of the Bangor location.

“It’s seeing all of the people who come from the small towns, far and away, arrive in droves to support their teams that makes the tournament so special to me. You can almost feel how much the experience means and how important this time of year is to them. The Class D schools don’t have sports like hockey, indoor track, swimming, etc., so for them basketball is king and they bring this sense of enthusiasm to Bangor!” — Paul Bouchard of Old Town

“Community spirit and the excitement of the participants.” — David Gray of Farmington

“The excitement of taking the floor for a big game as a player, coach or official with a good band playing.” — Marty Bouchard of Kennebunk

“We get to see all these teams and coaches and officials and then don’t see them for a year, then the tournament comes back and we get to catch up. It’s kind of like old home week, you get to see all these people that you don’t see much. A lot of the people there are old coaches and teachers that I had at Brewer.” — Laurie Richards of Brewer, teacher and Cross Insurance Center staff member

“The sheer excitement of the games, bands, cheerleaders, hometown fans, comradery between rival fans all pulling for the common cause.” — Richard of Orlando, Florida

“Seeing people that lived in my town in the past.” — Dennis Lowell of Lincoln

“I would say, like a lot of people say, it’s just part of the winter fabric now. You kind of plan your whole winter knowing tournament week, then you kind of know what it’s going to be like on the other side. I can’t imagine not being at the tournament. You see so many people that you might just see in February. You try to catch up and discuss things, it’s just a good place to kind of get together once a year or so. It’s my favorite week of the year. I really do think that.” — Dale Duff of Bangor, WHOU

“Getting together with friends.” — Douglas Libby of Ellsworth

“Fans cheering!” — Julie of Medway

“The first group of kids that made it up there, 2011, going into the building with them and sitting way up high and just being stunned at how many people were there and how big and important it felt. How it felt when you walk on the court and you look up and there are people everywhere. And you’re playing teams like Presque Isle with big bands and big fan bases. It was a totally different experience than we had. … I love the new venue, there are great sight lines, but there was nothing quite like the auditorium. It had a whole different energy to it. It had an old school feeling to it and had an extra level of intensity.” — Mike Gray of Gardiner, Gardiner girls basketball coach

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Adam Robinson

Adam Robinson is a native of Auburn, Maine, and graduate of Husson University and Edward Little High School. He enjoys sports, going on runs and video games.