Just Play It By Ear Because It’s Beep Ball!

Beep Ball was THE sporting event of the weekend (and you thought it was some boxing match!). The 17th Annual Country’s Beep Ball Tournament saw a lot of “Newbies” on the RibStix team!  Many of the sponsors and volunteers who showed up Friday night to take on the World Champion Indy Thunder were new to the game.  Some of the biggest hearts and worst hitters in Columbus gathered on the fields of the beautiful CSU campus to support awareness of the blind and visually impaired.  Thankfully, there is no shame in your game for being a bad hitter when you are wearing a blindfold.  In fact, there is quite a lot of pride in losing for such a great cause!

When do the losers come out the real winners? When they are willing to put on a blindfold to be led out to a home plate and strike out!  A series of endless strike outs is not much of a challenge for the World Champion Indy Thunder in the field, so to allow the champs the opportunity to show off their skills, the opposing newbies get to remove the blindfold for their last hit.

West Georgia Eye Care’s own Tosheka Williams made one of the rare blindfolded hits in Friday’s game! The catch though, is that she had to run to base blindfolded!  A World Champion Indy team fielder had her out before she could make it, but she was undaunted and ran all the way for the glory!  Team spirit like hers is what makes these expositions so much fun to watch!

The annual Beep Ball game is great fun, but the fun of it pales in comparison to its great purpose. Beep Ball is named for the beeping sound the ball makes, which allows players to hear the location of the ball.  It is an adapted version of America’s favorite pastime, and allows people with low vision (legally blind and the blind) to rock the sport!  Events like this one raise awareness of the abilities of the visually impaired to participate in and even dominate alternate sports and other arenas.

Sadly, according to the National Federation of the Blind, the unemployment rate among blind persons is 70 percent.   Misperceptions of the limitations of visual impairment can be part of the problem.  The visually impaired community endeavors to be seen by the sighted community for their abilities, not their disabilities, and those abilities were showcased at Friday’s event!

To view WRBL’s coverage click here: http://wrbl.com/2017/08/25/beep-baseball-game-promotes-blind-awareness/