The Metro Nashville Softball Association start slugging away in style as they kicked off their 2010 season on Sunday, April 11.
Opening Day activities kicked off at noon in West Park, and included a car show featuring antique, custom and classic automobiles. Members of Music City Cars, the Nashville-based Tennessee & Kentucky chapter of Lambda Car Club International (LLCI), were out in force, showing off vintage cars that included a 1957 Chevy Bel Air and a vintage Cadillac. LCCI is the country’s largest car club for gay men and lesbians, and they welcome anyone who has a love for cars and all things automotive.
In addition to the car show, MNSA sponsors descended on West Park to participate in a sponsor fair featuring local vendors, community organizations and other sports teams showing their support for the MNSA.
“The Nashville Grizzlies [Rugby Football Club] have a lot of friends in and have been given a lot of support by the men and women that play in the softball league,” said Grizzlies’ president Jon Glassmeyer. “Coming out here today gives us exposure to a wider group of sports fans, and also provides the opportunity to give back and show support for our friends in the GLBT sports community."
Other organizations participating in the fair included the Music City Bears, Nashville CARES, Music City FrontRunners, the Smokey Mountain Rodeo Association, and OutLoud Books and Gifts.
At 2 p.m. the players took to the field, officially opening the season with a parade of teams and a single-elimination tournament. While some teams are still forming, League Commissioner Kerry Pouge expects to have as many as 350 men and women, if not more, participating in the league this year.
“Right now, I have roughly 70 additional people looking to play softball this season,” said Pouge. “We are really in need of volunteers to step up and take on the roles of managers and coaches; we want to try and include everyone that wants to play.”
Regular season play began Sunday, April 18, and will continue through July. In August, teams from MNSA will then close out the regular 2010 season by heading to the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Association (NAGAAA) Gay World Series held in Columbus, Ohio.
For more information on team recruiting and the Metro Nashville Softball Association, visit their website at www.metronashvillesoftball.org.