The 14th annual Travis Roy Foundation Wiffle Ball Tournament kicks off on the weekend of Aug. 14-16 in Essex. The theme of this year’s event is “The Best Weekend of the Year,” and it will once again be hosted at Pat and Beth O’Connor’s three backyard fields, Little Fenway, Little Wrigley and Little Field of Dreams.
Last year’s tournament saw the debut of a third field — Little Field of Dreams — modeled after the cornfield ballpark in Dyersville, Iowa that was the site of the 1989 classic movie, “Field of Dreams.”
It joined the two quarter-scale replicas of the two oldest big league ballparks allowing the tournament to expand from 24 to 28 teams.
The 2014 tournament raised just under $475,000 to push the 13-year fundraising total to a staggering $2.9 million, making it one of the largest all-volunteer, athletic-related charitable fundraisers in the Green Mountain State.
Donations will be accepted at the site and on line at the official website of the tournament: http://www.travisroyfoundation.org/trf-wiffleball-tournament.
All funds go to the Travis Roy Foundation, which benefits and creates awareness for people with spinal cord injuries. It is named after the former Boston University men’s hockey player who resides with his family in nearby Malletts Bay in Colchester each summer.
The opening ceremonies at Little Fenway will begin on Friday, featuring the annual Celebrities-Sponsor game. Although all 28 teams are filled for the tournament, many other events will be held throughout the weekend including a silent auction, raffles, the Scooter’s Pretzel’s Home Run Derby, a kid’s Wiffle ball game and other fun kid’s activities including face painting, games and other contests.
The complete schedule and a full list of celebrities will be announced prior to the tournament.
In last year’s championship game, the Staten Island Yankees — one of the seven original teams to compete in each tournament — captured its second team title holding off the Jackhammers of Braintree, Mass.
For the fifth straight year, tournament action will be streamed live on the Internet on the Pack Network. The opening ceremonies and celebrity-sponsor game, Saturday’s money count ceremony and Sunday’s title game will be aired live as well as game action from Little Fenway throughout the weekend.
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