by Mitchell Kirk
Participants threw, dived and took a flying projectile or two in the name of raising money for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cass County at a dodgeball tournament fundraiser Saturday.
The organization’s first Dodge, Duck & Donate Dodgeball Tournament, held at the Columbia Middle School gym, brought in 18 six-member teams made up of groups of friends and employees representing local businesses and organizations. The teams’ registration fees brought in $1,620, not including the “life bands” given for each $50 raised in addition to registration fees that players could trade for an extra chance on the court after they were struck out. The event was also sponsored by Wright Orthopedics, Mike Anderson Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram Supercenter and the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cass County board of directors.
April Zartman, executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cass County, said new software introduced by the organization’s national office will require an extra $2,000 a year to maintain. In order to cover these costs, the local Big Brothers Big Sisters branch decided to organize its first dodgeball tournament fundraiser, which they hope to hold as an annual event that will grow in the future.
“We’re going to try to make it annual,” Zartman said. “We were hoping for more teams, but 18 is still a pretty good turnout for our first year. The people are having a good time. Hopefully it will grow.”
The Untuxables, a team made up of Indiana Department of Corrections employees and one of their friends, sported T-shits consisting of a muscle-bound male’s torso bursting out of a tuxedo.
“It’s a good time,” said Travis Hardy, a youth development specialist with the department. “It helps out the community and raises money for Big Brothers Big Sisters, which is always a good thing.”
Members of a team representing Twisted Detail, an auto detail shop in Logansport, shared their fellow participant’s sentiment.
“We came out for the kids,” said Cara Small in her team’s yellow and orange tie-dyed uniform. “It’s a good cause.”
“I wish more people came out,” said Small’s teammate Melissa Galimore, taking a break after a match. “Hopefully it gets bigger next year.”
Brian Johnson came out for the tournament with a group of his friends who created a team called The Dodgefathers.
“It took us quite some time,” he said of the name, which was printed in bright orange on their green camouflage T-shirts and styled similarly to the way the film “The Godfather” represents its title.
“We probably spent more time deliberating on the name than playing the game,” Johnson continued with a laugh.
OSR Bikes won the tournament and were awarded championship belts after the final match. Mike Anderson Dodgers, a team representing Mike Anderson Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram Supercenter, earned second place medals. Recognized as best-dressed was a team called Picked Last and the team that raised the most money for the event was the Walmart Night Owls.