MONTGOMERY – Home Team Sports will launch its Montgomery Spring 2018 Kickball season with free pickup games March 22 and March 29 at Lagoon Park. The official season is scheduled to start April 5 with games at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at Lagoon Park.

Several factors set apart this kickball league from others, according to Montgomery-based Home Team Sports co-partner Jeffery Runyon. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for 4 p.m. March 22 at Lagoon Park.

“We are the only true local league in Montgomery (local ownership),” he said. “We’re the least expensive league” with a registration fee of $45 per player compared with other leagues charging $55 and $65 per player. The league is open to adults ages 21 and older with all types of athletic ability. Each team will consist of a minimum of eight players – four men and four women.

Another important difference is forming a board to determine league rules. Each team will have a representative on the league board prior to the start of the season. The representatives will vote on such aspects as the size of the ball, pitching styles and whether bunting is allowed. Other leagues have predetermined rules and sometimes league commissioners change rules during the season, Runyon said. “It’s going to be truly Montgomery’s league.”

Home Team Sports co-partner Gregory Shelton is excited about launching a new kickball league with local ownership. “We cannot wait to get the season started and we know how much the players will enjoy playing in our league and the festivities after the games. It’s a new way to have fun in Montgomery.”

Participants will also vote on social aspects of the league, including party themes. There are three major parties planned: one to open the season; another for midseason and a final party to celebrate the end-of-the-season.

The league will have a more of a social flavor than other leagues. “We’re putting money back into the parties and the social budget will be large,” Runyon said. “There will be more emphasis on supporting our bar partner.” The league will have one or two bar partners, which will be sites for parties as well as after-game get-togethers. The bar partner will provide happy-hour prices to kickball league players as well as some discounted food prices. The league will also help with food and drink prices.

The bar partner will give items to the league for raffles that benefit Child Protect, the league’s designated charity. The nonprofit organization is a children’s advocacy center, which supports the victims of child abuse. Proceeds from the end-of-the-season party will also benefit Child Protect.

A one-day tournament called “Kicking for Kids” is scheduled April 28 at Range 231 to benefit Child Protect. There will be live music during games and afterward at the bar, which is sponsoring the event. A similar one-day charity kickball tournament raised about $3,000, Runyon said.

The league, which features a nine-week season, will be involved in the community by participating in a wide range of events. After the regular season there are playoff games and the championship game is set for June 14.

Businesses can become sponsors and have company logos on shirts or pay for a billboard at the fields. For information, visit www.hometeamsport.com

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