There will be two major events on Friday, Dec. 5 to honor basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain with not just one, but two, Forever postage stamps.
The first event will be a luncheon to celebrate this achievement and to recognize the brilliant efforts of the Wilt Chamberlain Postal Stamp Committee for spearheading this successful campaign to make this stamp a reality for the former Overbrook High, Kansas All-American and NBA star.
The luncheon will take place at First District Plaza, 3801 Market St. The event will have a number of speakers such as former NBA standouts Mike Bantom, Ollie Johnson, Wali Jones and Harvey Pollack, director of statistical information for the Philadelphia 76ers.
After the luncheon, the Philadelphia 76ers, will hold the official first day of issue dedication ceremony for the Wilt Chamberlain Forever stamps. As the first NBA player to be immortalized on a stamp, the ceremony honoring Chamberlain takes place at halftime of the Oklahoma City Thunder — Sixers game at the Wells Fargo Center. The tip off is at 7 p.m.
“It is an honor to be a part of history as we dedicate this stamp and celebrate the great Wilt Chamberlain with his family, friends and teammates,” said Sixers chief executive officer Scott O’Neil in a statement. “That he is the first NBA player to be featured on a United States Postal Service stamp speaks to the untouchable legacy he left behind on the court, and we are proud to call him a Sixer.”
Wilt Chamberlain stamps sales begin when doors open for the game at 6 p.m. All fans attending the game will receive a commemorative poster featuring images of Chamberlain from his great career as well as an image of the stamps. Fans may purchase the stamps inside the concourse and outside next to Wilt’s statue.
The halftime dedication ceremony will feature the use of the Sixers’ three-dimensional court projection system in a brand-new video. Chamberlain’s sisters Barbara Lewis and Selina Gross will also attend and take part in the ceremony, as will Sixers legends Julius Erving and Wali Jones, Sixers adviser Sonny Hill and Harvey Pollack.
Throughout the game, the Sixers will showcase Chamberlain’s tremendous contributions to the franchise and game through video tributes and other interactive features.
The stamps, just over two inches tall each, are about a third taller than a typical commemorative stamp height of approximately 1.5 inches. Kadir Nelson, of San Diego, Calif. created the two stamp image portraits of the NBA superstar. The word Wilt is featured in either the top right or left corner of each stamp. Art director Antonio Alcala’ of Alexandria, Va., designed the stamps.
NOTES: There will be another Wilt Chamberlain postage stamp celebration on Wednesday, Dec. 10. The event will be held at Overbrook High School, where Chamberlain had a stellar scholastic career. The program begins at 2 p.m.