It might be the off-season, but at least one Portland Trail Blazers star is keeping busy, helping local kids boost their ball skills.

The Damian Lillard Basketball Camp in Beaverton hosts around 600 boys and girls over two weeks of sessions. The kids range from age six to 16.

The camp, run through the YMCA, offers encouragement as the young athletes hone basketball fundamentals. Lillard says the annual camp is a special event for him.

“For me, it’s just fun to see that maturity and the growth,” Lillard, the Trail Blazers’ point guard, said. “That is what I enjoy the most, and when they come here, they aren’t calling me Damian Lillard, they call me ‘Dam’.”

This year, Lillard brought his son, Damian Jr., to the camp. Lillard said fatherhood has been a big but fun change.

“It’s been a little bit different because I’m used to just being able to get up and go,” Lillard said. “…it’s been a blessing.”

Junior was born in March.

Several local coaches were also on hand this year to work with the kids. The camp wraps up Friday.

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