SUMMERDALE, Alabama — The Central Baldwin Sunset Rotary Club will host its annual Alligators & Ale benefit for the Miracle League of Coastal Alabama Saturday, Oct. 5 at Alligator Alley in Summerdale.
This is the sixth year hosting the annual Corn Hole Tournament and the second year hosting the 5K and 1-mile fun run, said Rotary Club president Ann Simpson.
In 2017, the Rotary Club decided to designate the Miracle League as the beneficiary of the event, which recently broke ground on property nearby in Summerdale.
The mission of the Miracle League of Coastal Alabama is to “enrich our special needs community by giving them the opportunity to play in a facility that is tailored to their specific needs while, at the same time, providing an environment that benefits everyone regardless of physical or mental limitations.”
Proceeds from this and other fundraisers will go toward the building of a park with a baseball field and playground facility in Summerdale, “designed to eliminate the barriers that prevent our disabled residents and guests from playing side by side with family and friends.”
The park will accommodate wheelchairs, walkers and other assistive devices while helping to prevent injuries and that “provides an atmosphere where everyone intermingles whether disabled or not.” For more information visit miracleleaguecoastalalabama.com.
“Miracle League is all over Alabama, but there hasn’t been one in Mobile or Baldwin County up until now,” Simpson said. “We are just so happy to be a part of such a worthy cause.”
In 2017, Simpson said, the event raised $5,000. With the addition of the 5K race and sponsors, that figure jumped to $25,000 last year and, Simpson said, they will far exceed that figure this year.
“We will be presenting a check to the Miracle League at the event,” Simpson said. “We are just so appreciative of all of our sponsors. I’ve never seen anything like it. We are just constantly getting calls from businesses, unsolicited, wanting to sponsor this event. It’s such a blessing.”
While the Miracle League has received larger grants, the grant funds are limited to paying costs of needed equipment.
“The great thing about what we’re doing is that they can use the funds they receive from us for some of their more immediate needs,” Simpson said. “They have just been so appreciative of everything we’ve been able to do.”
You can register for the 5K race and 1-mile fun run online at events.com. Race-day registration and race packet pickup begins at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday in the parking lot at Alligator Alley, 19950 County Road 71, Summerdale.
Early registration, which ends Friday, Sept. 27, costs $25 for adults, $15 for students. After Sept. 27, registration for the 5K race and 1-mile fun run is $30 for adults, $20 for students (k-12) and will include a T-shirt and admission to Alligator Alley.
The 5K race begins at 8 a.m., followed immediately by the 1-mile fun run at approximately 8:45 a.m.
Race awards and recognition of sponsors will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the Alligator Alley grandstand, followed by an alligator demonstration hosted by Alligator Alley owner Wes Moore at 10 a.m. and cornhole tournament beginning at 11 a.m. A television truck, donated by Bryant Bank, will begin broadcasting SEC football games at 11 a.m.
Registration for the single-elimination corn hole tournament is $300 per team and is limited to 24 teams, Simpson said.
For those not wishing to participate in activities, admission to Alligator Alley costs $13 for adults, $11 for children 12 and under. All admission charges will be donated to the Miracle League, Simpson said.
There is also a kids’ zone with plenty of activities for younger attendees to enjoy.
Concessions will also be available throughout the day, provided by the Central Baldwin Baseball League and the Central Baldwin Softball League.
The Central Baldwin Sunset Rotary Club is part of Rotary International whose motto is “Service Above Self.” The Central Baldwin Sunset Rotary Club meets at 5 p.m. every Thursday at the Rotary House, 22765 Alabama 59 S., Robertsdale. For more information visit centralbaldwinsunsetrotary.com or visit the Central Baldwin Sunset Rotary Club page on Facebook.