Helena Miracle League holds opening day

By NATHAN HOWELL | Staff Writer

HELENA – The Helena Miracle League kicked off its third season as an organization on April 17, which saw several athletes come out and play baseball in front of friends, family and other guests at Joe Tucker Park.

The league exists to fulfil their mission of providing opportunities for children who have disabilities to play sports. They use community resources and support to help assist young athletes play sports, that they may not otherwise be able to play.

According to League Founder Mary Chambliss, they offer an adaptive setting where anyone, regardless of their condition, can get out and enjoy playing the sport of baseball.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the league was forced to cancel most of their games in their second year during 2020. They were only able to play their first game in the spring, but were able to return during the fall to offer games for the children.

“We started off very optimistic last year, but then everything got shut down,” Chambliss said. “We had to go back and rebuild what we built in the first year, but I think that this season is going to be great for us.”

That spirit was evident of the faces of the league’s players as they hit balls and ran around the bases on Saturday. People of varying ages were able to participate in the league’s game. Throughout the game they laughed and smiled as they slid through the dirt and caught baseballs.

The season saw some resistance as the opening was originally set for April 9, however inclement weather forced the league to reschedule. However, on April 17 the weather was perfect and drew a crowd of guests out to support the players.

“We had a great opening day,” Chambliss said. “I want to thank the Church at Cahaba Bend and the Helena Belles and all of our volunteers for such a fun day.”

Throughout the course of the pandemic, people with disabilities were hit hard and a lot of the usual programming that they normally participate in was cancelled. Being able to finally offer the games to the children is very important according to Chambliss.

“It is great physical activity, and offers them the opportunity to develop their social skills,” Chambliss said. “A lot of them have been stuck at home during the pandemic and this helps them to get out and have some fun.”

The league will continue to play games each Saturday at 9 a.m at Joe Tucker Park for the next few weeks.

Chambliss said that they were always seeking sponsors, volunteers and donations to help make the program a success.

Anyone interested in participating in any form can reach out at helenabaseballmiracles@gmail.com or on the Helena Miracle League Facebook page.

See more photos from this event at Shelbycountyphotos.com.