Durham Bulls Ballpark Renovation Project Award Presentation

Durham Bulls Ballpark Project

Our league applied for the $10,000 Durham Bulls and Coastal Credit Union Ballpark Renovation Project grant, awarded to four deserving organizations in the Triangle area. And we won! From Capital Broadcasting:

Four organizations have been chosen as the inaugural winners of the Durham Bulls Ballpark Project presented by Coastal Credit Union. Person High School, Bull City Little League, Durham Softball and Hillsborough Youth Athletic Association have each earned a $10,000 donation for facility renovations.

“This was an extremely tough decision for our committee, as every application was well-done,” Durham Bulls Vice President Mike Birling said. “In the end, these four organizations stood out not only as worthy groups, but as locations which will help to grow the sports of baseball and softball for years to come.”

Person High School will have renovations made to both its baseball and softball fields, and Bull City Little League will see an improvement to its facility which houses three fields. The Durham Softball facility will have an overhaul for the first time since it was built, and Hillsborough Youth Athletic League will see renovations for its over 500 children who participate in its leagues each year.

Each facility will be renovated in the coming months, with a list of priorities submitted by each location. Additionally, representatives from each organization will be honored on-field at Durham Bulls Athletic Park on Tuesday, August 7.

I am super excited about what this means for our league and our future in Durham sports. I want to thank all the players for believing in the concept and making this amazing league possible.

To celebrate, get your Durham Bulls tickets for Tuesday, August 7 through this link! The Bulls and Columbus Clippers will play a doubleheader (two 7-inning games) starting at 6:05pm.

As if $2 Taco Tuesday wasn’t enough motivation to attend, we get to accept the $10,000 check for our league on the field in-between the two games! Special tickets are discounted down to just $8.99 and two sections of tickets have been reserved for all winners!

Represent our league and wear your Durham Softball shirt, if you can. I’ll make a cool, custom Durham Softball keychain for anyone who wears their Durham Softball jersey and tags our league in a Facebook post on your personal timeline or on our page’s timeline. Show off your Durham Softball pride and help support the other three deserving winners during the ceremony in-between games of the double header! I hope to see you there!

https://groupmatics.events/event/BallparkChallenge

Dig It Farm supports Durham Softball!

A sample of the veggies available from Dig It Farm in Durham, NC.

We are proud to announce a new partnership with a great local business, Dig It Farm

Dig It Farm is a local vegetable farm that uses organic practices in Bahama, NC to provide fresh-from-the-ground veggies at local Farmer Markets and their CSA Program.

With their CSA Program, you pre-pay for the season, and get an assortment of fresh produce delivered each week. It’s a convenient way to get a great range of fresh, healthy produce each week, and simultaneously support a growing, environmentally-friendly local farm. It doesn’t get more fresh or local than Dig It Farm – their farm is less than 15 miles from Durham. Your veggies will still be in the ground less than 24 hours before your weekly delivery date, while most large grocers have their food stored for weeks before making it available to purchase. If you have time to cook each week, love vegetables, and enjoy eating new greens and roots, then the Dig It Farm CSA is for you!

During the 2018 Softball Season, Dig It Farm will be sponsoring two “Veggie Weeks,” during which Durham Softball players will get to take home FREE fresh veggies after their game. Dig It Farm will provide examples of the sizes and contents of their weekly CSA Boxes, with a small individual serving of fresh produce given out to everyone. The quantity and type of veggies available during the Dig It Farm sample weeks will be based on what is fresh and in-season at the time, but we can promise it will be delicious!

Thank you to Dig It Farm for their support of our cause and helping us encourage healthy eating habits!

Softball Practice!

Action shot of a pitch being thrown during Spring softball practice

Our first softball practice of the year went great this weekend! Thanks to everyone who came out to play! We had a lot of fun taking some batting practice, fielding some infield and outfield, and playing a few mini games. A special thanks to Chris at MoveEvolve Fitness for guiding our group through stretches before we got started!

As a reminder, we’ll be holding slow pitch softball practices every Sunday in March as we get ready for our Spring season, beginning on April 8, 2018! Here are the dates, with a link to our Facebook event for each one:

Practice will be held at our home field at 223 E. Institute Dr, Durham, NC, 27703.

Weekly Promotions During the Regular Season

All 8 of Our Non-Profit Sponsor Organizations

During each week of the season, we will try to hold weekly promotions that encourage players from all teams to come together and support one of our causes. This will give players a reason to learn about each organization in the league and understand why the work they do is important. We hope the concept will help bring the players from different teams together under the same common goal of helping the Durham community through softball.

To encourage participation and give players another way to help all of the causes in the league, we will host a contest to reward the team that collects the most of a particular item each week. During each promotion, a Prize Pool will be set and the top 2 donating teams will earn a portion of the pool for their charity.

Specific dates are still TBD, but here are the details of the feature weeks we have planned so far:

  • Central Piedmont Community Action
    • Two Clothing Drives – one for Socks and one for Coats – to support the CPCA’s Clothes Closet project. Any pair of socks and any type of coat made for humans will be accepted, regardless of size. Items must be new or lightly used, with no stains/holes/rips/tears.
  • Hope Animal Rescue
    • Dog Toys – Any new or lightly used Dog Toy will be accepted.
  • Meals on Wheels
    • Nutrition Bars – Any low-sodium, healthy breakfast / nutrition / granola bar will be accepted.
  • STEM in the Park
    • Brain Food – All individual-sized bags of pretzels, chips, trail mix, goldfish, peanuts, etc. will be accepted.d.
  • Girls on the Run of the Triangle
    • Colored Pencils / Markers – Any new, unused box of colored markers, or any new or lightly used box of colored pencils, will be accepted.
  • Housing for New Hope
    • Bath Towels – Any new or lightly used bath towels, including hand towels and bath mats, will be accepted.

Donations will be accepted at the field by the umpire until the last out of the last game of the day.

We appreciate your help! We hope this encourages more direct giving and participation so all of our teams can support a sponsor even if they aren’t on their team. Where possible, weeks will be sponsored by other local businesses who support our mission and want to give back to the Durham community.

Press Release: 2018 Durham Softball Season Announcement

All 8 of Durham Softball's non-profit sponsor organizations

New Durham Softball League Supports Local Non-Profit Organizations

DURHAM, NC – Durham Softball is a new co-ed recreational softball league that benefits local non-profit organizations in Durham. Players will compete each game for donations to their team’s sponsor organization and help raise awareness for their cause. Thanks to the RTP Foundation, Durham Softball will donate an average of more than $300/team each season to these great local non-profit sponsors.

Durham Softball features a diverse group of local non-profit organizations:

“Our sponsor organizations represent some of the best causes in Durham, so I thought it would be a cool idea to bring them together in one league,” said Ryan Mentock, commissioner of the Durham Softball League. “We believe that each of the sponsors represents a different type of need in our community and they all share the same basic mission of helping Durham. I think it makes the competition more meaningful and fun if we can help support local charities while playing the game.”

Sponsors will earn minimum donations for their participation and teams will compete to earn larger donations by winning games during the season, finishing in the Top 4, or winning the Championship. The goal of the league is to have fun while helping these non-profits improve Durham.

“None of this would be possible without the support of the RTP Foundation, so we are extremely grateful for their help,” said Mentock. “The RTP Foundation’s contributions reflect their commitment to our community and their ability to bring people together to solve society’s toughest problems.”

If you are interested in helping one of these local non-profit sponsor organizations by playing softball, visit durhamsoftball.com for more information!

$55/Player Single-Season Player Registration Fee includes a Team Jersey, 14 Regular Season Games, at least 1 Playoff Game, and a free drink for all players at our sponsor bar after every game.

Registrations Begin February 1, 2018. The first game of the Regular Season is April 1, 2018. Games will be played on Sundays between 11am and 5pm from April through October at the RTP Softball Fields.

2018 League Schedule

The Durham Softball League starts playing games during the first week of April each year. Easter is on April 1 this season, so the 2018 season will start on Sunday, April 8. The year will be split into two separate seasons, with the second season beginning one week after the first season’s Championship game.

Season Schedule

During 2018, there are 26 eligible weeks during the year where Durham Softball League games may be played:

Date Week
Sunday, April 1, 2018 Easter Sunday Today – OFF
Sunday, April 8, 2018 1
Sunday, April 15, 2018 2
Sunday, April 22, 2018 3
Sunday, April 29, 2018 4
Sunday, May 6, 2018 5
Sunday, May 13, 2018 Mother’s Day Today – OFF
Sunday, May 20, 2018 6
Sunday, May 27, 2018 Memorial Day on Monday – OFF
Sunday, June 3, 2018 7
Sunday, June 10, 2018 8
Sunday, June 17, 2018 Father’s Day Today – OFF
Sunday, June 24, 2018 9
Sunday, July 1, 2018 10
Sunday, July 8, 2018 11
Sunday, July 15, 2018 12
Sunday, July 22, 2018 13
Sunday, July 29, 2018 14
Sunday, August 5, 2018 15
Sunday, August 12, 2018 16
Sunday, August 19, 2018 17
Sunday, August 26, 2018 18
Sunday, September 2, 2018 Labor Day on Monday – OFF
Sunday, September 9, 2018 19
Sunday, September 16, 2018 20
Sunday, September 23, 2018 21
Sunday, September 30, 2018 22
Sunday, October 7, 2018 23
Sunday, October 14, 2018 24
Sunday, October 21, 2018 25
Sunday, October 28, 2018 26
TOTAL 26 Weeks to Play 18 Weeks
8 “Built-In” Rainout Dates

The league does not play games on Sunday when national holidays fall on a Sunday or Monday during the year.

With 8 Regular Season Weeks and 1 Playoff Week, the two seasons will require a total of 18 Sundays each year. With 26 Eligible Sundays between April 8 and November 1, we have 8 “built-in” weeks to accommodate rain-out reschedules and still get both seasons in before the end of the year.

Spring Season: Starts Sunday, April 8, 2018; ends after 9 eligible weeks.

The Spring league has the potential to finish on June 24th, which is the 9th eligible week of the season. With at least a couple rain-outs likely, a more realistic date for the 9th week’s Championship game might be July 1 or July 8, the 11th and 12th eligible weeks of the year. Whenever the Championship game from the Spring season is played, the Summer season will begin exactly one week later.

Summer Season: Starts 2 weeks after Spring Season; ends after 9 eligible weeks.

If the Summer season’s “one week later” start date lands on a holiday, the season will start two weeks later. This means the earliest that the Summer season might begin is June 24, because it is one week after the earliest date that the Spring season could end. Because it is unlikely for the Spring season to be completed with out any rain-outs, a more realistic date for the Summer season’s Opening Day is July 8 or July 15.

With good weather, it is possible to end both seasons as early as September 9th, the 19th eligible week of the season (one “Bye” week allowed between seasons). For each rain-out during the year, the seasons would get one week longer.

Weekly Schedule

Games are played on Sundays and start between 11am and 5pm, for a total of 7 games per week.

  • 6 of the 8 teams will play a double header, with one game immediately after the other.
  • The other two teams will play a single game at either 11am or 5pm.
  • Over the 8-week regular season, each team will have 6 double headers and 2 weeks with only a single game.
  • If you only play 1 game, it will be at either 11am or 5pm.
  • All teams will play each other twice, home and away.
  • The 9th week of each season will feature two single-elimination tournaments. The Consolation Tournament will be played between the Bottom 4 teams competing for 5th Place; the Championship Tournament will be played by the Top 4 teams competing for 1st Place.

Each week, scheduled games will follow the following format:

Game Team #1 Team #2
11:00am 1 8
12:00pm 1 2
1:00pm 3 2
2:00pm 3 4
3:00pm 5 4
4:00pm 5 6
5:00pm 7 6

One “Featured Organization” Each Week

With an 8-week regular season and 8 teams, all teams will have a single week where their non-profit is featured to highlight and promote their non-profit to the other members of the league. The featured organization plays the 11am/12pm double header during the first two games to start the week. The captain of the team, or a representative of the non-profit, is invited and encouraged to stay for the remaining games to talk with the other teams before their game, let them know more about your organization, and collect any donated items that teams may bring to the fields.

Rain-Outs / Rescheduling Games

When a week gets rained out, all games are rescheduled for the last week of the regular season. This makes sure that most games on the schedule are played as originally scheduled at the start of the season so players can better plan their weekends ahead of time.

If some games are played, but other games need to be rescheduled, those games would always be made up during the last week of the season, even if other games get rained out after them. In an emergency, alternate arrangements to play games earlier/later in the day may be considered if both teams agree to the accommodations.

Awards & Bonuses

In addition to the donations we’ll make to these sponsor organizations based on their participation and performance, teams in the league are also competing for a few nice prizes each season. The physical prizes will be awarded to the non-profit sponsor organization of the team that wins the award, as described below.

Umpire’s Choice Award

The Durham Softball Umpire’s Choice Award is an extra end-of-season bonus donation for one team in the league. The Award is voted on by the Umpires affiliated with the league at the end of the season.

The Umpire’s Choice Award pool is equal to 2% of the available Donation Pool at the end of the regular season. For 12 to 19 players per team, this donation would roughly be between $23 and $72, respectively, depending on the number of players in the league. The Umpires will vote for the team that most exemplifies the following characteristics during the season:

  • Sportsmanship. The players respect their opponents and do not seek conflict while playing the game.
  • Team Work. The players respect their teammates, speak positively, and encourage each other during the game.
  • Service. The players participate in weekly promotions and contribute to the causes of the other teams in the league.

To be eligible for the award, the team must have zero forfeits on the season. These requirements are meant to encourage fair play and allow the Umpires to also help give back and contribute to our cause.

Player’s Choice Award

The Durham Softball Player’s Choice Award is basically the exact same as the Umpire’s Choice Award, only voted on by the Players in the league, rather than the Umpires. The donation amounts, voting criteria, and eligibility requirements are all the same.

Regular Season / Tournament Champions

In addition to receiving the largest performance-based donation bonus for having the best record at the end of the season, the Regular Season Champion’s sponsor organization will receive a custom trophy. The trophy is being donated to the league by The Tockery, a local Durham custom wood and acrylic fabricating and engraving shop, and will be customized to include the name and logo of the winning organization.

The Tockery is also making Giant Checks to present to all teams at the end of the season. The check will be made out in the amount of the donation that the team earned for their non-profit sponsor that season. The teams won’t be able to keep the check, but it’ll still look cool for pictures. Everyone likes to take a picture with a giant check, right?

Drinks at Sponsor Bar

Each week, our sponsor bar has been gracious enough to offer a free pitcher of domestic brew to all teams on Sunday after their games! Just show up on Sunday afternoon with at least 4 people from your team wearing their Durham Softball jerseys. Since our Sponsor is kind enough to pay for the first drink each week, they hope you’ll stay for lunch and tip your server well!